Hollywood strikes: Studios make first steps to negotiate with the WGA over strikes

Adam Shapiro poses on a picket line outside Netflix studios on Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2023, in Los Angeles.
Adam Shapiro poses on a picket line outside Netflix studios on Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2023, in Los Angeles. Copyright Richard Shotwell/Invision
By Jonny Walfisz with AP
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The studios have taken the first tentative steps towards making a deal with the actors and writers union after strikes brought Hollywood to a standstill this summer.


The head of the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) has requested a meeting with the heads of the Writers Guild of America (WGA).

This is the first time since the WGA went on strike in May that the AMPTP has made any movement towards negotiations. The proposed meeting tomorrow (Friday 4 August) will be to discuss the resumption of contracts.

It’s taken three months worth of strikes before this first step in resolving the dispute. For context, in the last writers strike in 2007, it took just 12 days before the AMPTP opened up negotiations. The strikes have already gone on long enough that the Emmys have been forced to postpone the 2023 awards ceremony to January 2024. 

“We’ll be back in communication with you sometime after the meeting with further information,” an email from the WGA to its members read. “As we’ve said before, be wary of rumours. Whenever there is important news to share, you will hear it directly from us.”

While the AMPTP has reached out to the WGA, there has been no official conversations planned with the other striking union, the Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA).

SAG-AFTRA have been on strike since 14 July in the first dual strike by the creative unions since 1960. The main contention for both unions is a lack of residuals from streaming platforms and the rising threat of AI on creative industries.

“I had hoped that we would already have had some kind of conversations with the industry by now,” SAG-AFTRA Executive Director Duncan Crabtree-Ireland told The Associated Press Tuesday. “Obviously, that hasn’t happened yet, but I’m optimistic.”

Asked about the prospect of talks with either guild, a spokesperson for the AMPTP in an email said only that “We remain committed to finding a path to mutually beneficial deals with both Unions.”

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