SAG-AFTRA Requests More Time to Analyze Studios’ Latest Offer
• SAG-AFTRA requested additional time to review the studio’s latest offer during a meeting on Saturday.
• The offer includes a doubled residual bonus for the most-watched streaming shows and the highest minimum wage increase in four decades.
• SAG-AFTRA has expressed concern about protecting their members against digital representation.
• If an agreement is not reached, there may be show cancellations and delayed theatrical releases in 2024.
• Fran Drescher expressed hope that the response would bring about a resolution.
In a brief meeting on Saturday, SAG-AFTRA informed the studio heads that they need additional time to evaluate the studios’ most recent offer. These negotiations come as the actor’s strike enters its 114th day, with the studios presenting their “last, best and final” offer.
The offer includes an improved residual bonus for actors on popular streaming shows. Specifically, actors appearing on the most-watched shows on each platform will see their standard streaming residual doubled.
This offer surpasses the deal offered to the Writers Guild of America, which granted a 50% residual bonus for writers on top-performing shows.
Additionally, the proposal includes extensive protections for artificial intelligence and the highest minimum wage increase in four decades. Notable studio leaders, including Bob Iger of Disney and Ted Sarandos of Netflix, participated in the Zoom meeting.
SAG-AFTRA leadership stated they require more time to review and respond to the offer carefully. They anticipate holding internal discussions before communicating their next steps to the studios.
Over the past 12 days, both parties have engaged in ongoing talks to resolve the strike.
The studios have expressed their urgency to end the strike swiftly. They have warned that without a near-term agreement, there may be show cancellations and further delays to theatrical releases. Resolving the issue of artificial intelligence remains one of the most challenging aspects of the negotiations. SAG-AFTRA has emphasized the need for specific protections against the development of “digital doubles,” but it seems the studios’ latest offer does not entirely meet those requirements.
It remains uncertain if a deal can be reached this weekend.
Negotiators have spent considerable time addressing intricate details of artificial intelligence, including consent requirements for AI usage. Background actors, in particular, have expressed concerns about being replaced by digital versions of themselves.
In an email to members, SAG-AFTRA reminded them of the picketing schedule for the upcoming week and informed them that collectible strike buttons would be available at each studio lot.
Hollywood’s major studios extended an offer to SAG-AFTRA on Friday, aiming to end the 113-day actors strike. If an agreement couldn’t be reached by the end of the week, the networks warned of show cancellations and further delays to summer theatrical releases in 2024. SAG-AFTRA confirmed they would meet with AMPTP representatives on Saturday following a week of “cautious optimism.” The involvement of top studio CEOs, such as those from Warner Bros., Disney, Netflix, and NBCUniversal, is expected to resume after a week-long absence from negotiations.
Union president Fran Drescher expressed hope that the studios’ response would bring about a resolution. The studios have not explicitly labeled their offer as “last, best, and final,” a term usually indicating no further significant concessions from the employer. However, if SAG-AFTRA rejects the offer, they could continue the strike.
SAG-AFTRA will review the proposal before providing their response.