Wednesday, May 14, 2008

SAG could strike; some disruption already; issues seem complicated and obscure to most; "WGA Act II?"

Here we go again! Having gotten through the Writers Guild spectacle, now the Screen Actors Guild threatens a walkout at the end of June if the contract is not renewed.

Once again, there are the rich, and there are the “poor” and its hard to wonder where the sympathies are. If you stop and think about your favorite soap opera (if you have one), many of the actors appear only occasionally and probably don’t make that much a year.

Wired has a blog entry reading “SAG Strike affecting movies ahead of schedule”, by John Scott Lewinski, here.

The Variety story by Dave McNary “Prepping for a SAG Strike: Insurance coverage offered for wok coverage, is here.
A related concept is the completion bond for a film. The article notes that two thirds of SAG’s 120000 members earn less than $1000 a year from acting in films.

I don’t know whether the negotiations or a new contract would affect the Sag Indie contracts. The link for the Indie agreements as they are now is here: (there are a lot of different agreements and links to follow). This is of great interest to me because of what I have in mind, maybe for later this year.

Later I may have more on what the underlying issues are.

The SAG page for the TV/theatrical contract negotiations is here.
SAG’s latest press release is “AMPTP Suspends Negoations …. “ here.

Age discrimination complaint from a screenwriter:

The May 2008 AARP Bulletin, on p 35, in a column "The Law" by Emily Sachar, discusses the case of screenwriter Larry Mintz (Mork & Mandy, The Nanny), 58, now working as a substitute teacher, who has filed an age bias suit against International Creative Management and Viacom. Writers have to earn over $31174 to qualify for guild (WGA?) benefits. The story has not yet appeared online (keep checking).

Even so, there is a story in The Washington Post, Style, May 15, by William Booth, "Still Kicking: In His 10th Decade, Millard Kaufman Has a Few Stories Left to Tell" about 91-year-old screenwriter Millard Kaufman for his new novel "Bowl of Cherries,: link here.

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