SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher reveals the breakthrough that paved the way for the actors strike ending
Now that the SAG-AFTRA strike has come to an end after 118 days on the picket lines, guild president Fran Drescher revealed the moment that lead to it’s end.
The guild went on strike July 14, with actors walking picket lines alongside Writers Guild of America writers, the first time there’s been a dual-strike since 1960.
The WGA strike spanned 148 days, from May 2 to September 27, and now with the SAG-AFTRA strike ending, Hollywood can finally get back to work in earnest.
SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher, who, along with chief negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, negotiated the historic deal, said to be worth just over $1 billion over the three-year contract, the highest gains ever for the guild.
Drescher, 66, spoke with NPR on Thursday, where she revealed the breakthrough moment that lead to th 118-day strike to come to an end.
Fran on George: Now that the SAG-AFTRA strike has come to an end after 118 days on the picket lines, guild president Fran Drescher revealed how A-lister George Clooney reacted
Breakthrough: Drescher, 66, spoke with NPR on Thursday, where she revealed the breakthrough moment that lead to th 118-day strike to come to an end
‘Well, we were making strides throughout the time that we were on strike, except, of course, from when the AMPTP decided they were either going to walk out or they themselves were deliberating taking time before they came back with a counterproposal,’ Drescher began.
‘So, you know, the time was usually productive. And once we really got to a place where not only did they really fully grasp the idea that this is a new dawn, that this is new leadership, that this is a historic time and this calls for a seminal negotiation — then whatever it was that we were talking about, whatever it was we felt that we needed, they decided to put their thinking caps on and group together to come up with their own solution version,’ Drescher admitted.
One of the big sticking points was regulation of A.I., which Drescher said will be an, ‘ongoing discussion and potentially an ongoing battle.’
‘In the world of AI, three months is equivalent to a year. So we got whatever we thought we could possibly get to protect our members for the duration of this contract. But we also requested that we all meet together to just take the pulse of where technology is twice a year,’ she added.
Drescher continued, ‘We would be talking about it because we’re going to have to come together on the same side for federal regulation and also to protect both of us from piracy.’
‘So, you know, there is a lot there that we have to really start working together on. And now there’s language in the contract to protect my members. And in three years, it may be a whole different situation with new problems that need to be unpacked and discussed and argued and negotiated. And I think it’s going to be this way for a very long time. And that’s OK,’ she added.
She revealed in another interview with Extra that the value of the contract was $1,011,000,000, which she mentioned was, ‘quite historic in terms of the size of the contract in this industry.’
While the writers and directors scored 5% increases with their new contracts with the AMPTP, the actors earned a 7% increase, with the industry’s lowest-earning performers – background actors – getting an 11% hike.
‘When it all adds up, it’s quite significant… You know, it wasn’t what we wanted as the performers with the background people got, we didn’t get that, but we were very happy that our lowest-earning members got the most for their minimum salary.”
So proud: She added that Tyler Perry also called her and told her, ‘I’ m so, so proud of you. It’s you. You did this,’ while adding how other stars reacted
New inroads: She added, “New inroads were carved everywhere. And that’s what this moment was really about. It was essential that artificial intelligence be barricaded, with a lot of protections for the members’
She added, “New inroads were carved everywhere. And that’s what this moment was really about. It was essential that artificial intelligence be barricaded, with a lot of protections for the members.’
‘And, you know, it was very important that we found a new stream of revenue to try and level the playing field when it comes to compensation for the members that work the streaming channels,’ she continued.
The guild president added, ‘We’re already thinking about what we’re going to be working on for the next contract. In a negotiation, you don’t get everything.’
‘There was so much meat on the bone that we did get. It is such a triumph, such an extraordinary contract with so much in it that makes it meaningful for the lives of all of our members and, really, for generations to come. That was also important, because I think that this is a historic time, and we needed a seminal negotiation to match it,’ she stated.
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