Screenwriters and Studios Reach Tentative Agreement on New Contract

Screenwriters and Studios Reach Tentative Agreement on New Contract

The months-long WGA strike remains ongoing until the deal is ratified by the union’s 11,500 members

Signs for the WGA strike in Los Angeles

Signs for the WGA strike in Los Angeles (Carolyn Cole/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

The Writers Guild of America (WGA) and the the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) have tentatively agreed to a new contract after a months-long standstill, Variety reports. The writers strike—ongoing since May 2—will continue until the new deal is ratified by vote of its 11,500 members, but picketing has been suspended. 

The WGA and AMPTP had resumed bargaining negotiations on Wednesday, September 20, with major studio CEOs Bob Iger (Disney), David Zaslav (Warner Discovery), Ted Sarandos (Netflix), and Donna Langley (Universal) in attendance. The studios publicly announced Saturday (September 23) that they had submitted their “best and final” offer; the union returned with additional asks before the negotiations wrapped up Sunday night.

Striking writers were seeking changes to television staffing practices, greater residuals from streaming media, and limits to be placed on the use of artificial intelligence. The strike resulted in production stoppages, impacting late night shows as well as major films and television series like Stranger Things. Drew Barrymore and Bill Maher both recently announced intentions to bring their talk shows back without writers, but both backtracked on those plans. The Emmy Awards, originally scheduled to air on September 18, were postponed due to the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes. SAG-AFTRA’s strike is ongoing.

The strike impacted workers across the entertainment industry, including musicians and music supervisors. Many crew members’ access to healthcare plans contingent upon working a minimum number of days to qualify were impacted by the strike, prompting auctions and other fundraising endeavors. Read Pitchfork’s article “What the Hollywood Actors and Writers Strike Means for Music.”

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