This past Wednesday, SAG-AFTRA did not reach a deal with AMPTP, leading to Friday's start to the conjoined strike with the Writers' Guild of America. Consisting of 160,000 members from SAG-AFTRA and 11,000 members from WGA, this marks the first time Hollywood's writers and actors have simultaneously withheld their work in 63 years.
The deal was never an attempted one essentially. AMPTP didn't want a meeting with the group as the time was ticking to negotiate. The collaboration never existed and didn't want to engage on making a deal, no sidebar either. There was no way a compromise would occur when nothing was listened to from AMPTP in the first place.
The cast of Oppenheimer was on the red carpet when the strike was called and immediately left support the unions of actors and writers who are not in the same fortunate position as they are. Nolan, the director of the upcoming film, acknowledged the work of Cillian Murphy, Emily Blunt, Matt Damon, Florence Pugh, and Robert Downey Jr., supporting the walk out to write their picket signs for the strike that could last for several months.
Here are the rules on what not and what to do for SAG members:
Services and performing work under the TV/Theatrical contracts must be withheld, including, but not limited to:
- Principal on camera work, such as:
- Acting, singing, dancing, performing stunts, piloting on-camera aircraft, puppeteering, and performance capture or motion capture work;
- Principal off camera work, such as:
- ADR/Looping, TV trailers (promos) and theatrical trailers, voice acting, singing, narration, including audio descriptive services except as the services may be covered by another collective bargaining agreement referred in the Notice to Members Regarding Non-Struck Work, and Background Work….
More work is described and explained here under the SAG-AFTRA official website: Strike Notice to Members (sagaftra.org)
- Members must not cross SAG-AFTRA picket lines, subject to the exceptions outlined in
SAG-AFTRA's Notice Regarding Non-Struck Work.
- Members must instruct their agent and/or other representatives to discontinue
conducting negotiations on their behalf with the studios, streamers and networks for
- Members must inform SAG-AFTRA of all strikebreaking activity by emailing
- Members are also bound by any rules or interpretations set forth in the FAQs relating to
this Strike Notice and Order. FAQs will be available shortly at
Other concerns that are discussed right now is how studio executives can potentially reach out to content creators for employment due to writers, production staff, actors, and other associated workers are not actively employed.
“This is not the time for you to suddenly take jobs cause they can't hire us,” writer and director Caroline Renard wrote on Twitter in response to a widely circulated video by writer Franchesca Ramsey explaining the strike rules. “Taking an acting job or a writing job right now is considered scabbing,” Ramsey said in the video, “and it will hurt your career in the future.”
Indie films are exempted from these rules and are highly encouraged to continue their production process. Strikes are being held primarily in Los Angeles and New York City.