SAG-AFTRA & Studios Nearing Breakthrough on AI Negotiations; Strike Resolution in Sight
• SAG-AFTRA and Hollywood studios are meeting today in hopes of reaching an agreement to end the 117-day actors guild strike.
• Last night, a breakthrough was made regarding AI negotiations, with strong protection measures being offered by the studios and agreed upon by the guild.
• In addition to AI, both sides have moved closer in terms of minimum rates for performers. The studios initially proposed 7%, while SAG-AFTRA asked for 11%. The compromise is expected to be around 8%.
• The studios’ latest offer includes a multi-decade wage increase and 100% raise in performance bonuses, though the guild has concerns about the thresholds set for these bonuses.
• Today’s meeting between Crabtree-Ireland and Lombardini is key in finalizing the AI language and coming to a resolution that could end the costly strike that has resulted in losses of 45,000 jobs and $67.5 billion for California’s economy.
The lead negotiators for SAG-AFTRA and the studios are ready to meet today for what could be the final step in reaching a new deal and ending the 117-day actors guild strike.
After achieving a breakthrough last night on the contentious issue of AI, Duncan Crabtree-Ireland and AMPTP president Carol Lombardini are scheduled to discuss further this afternoon. According to a guild source, they are very close to an agreement, with strong protection measures in place regarding AI.
The guild sought these safeguards even before the strike began in July. Studio sources express hope that a deal will be reached, with one insider confidently stating, “It’s going to happen.”
Yesterday, after SAG-AFTRA responded to the studios’ “last, best, and final offer” from last week, a Zoom meeting occurred late into the night. The CEOs of Disney, Warner Bros Discovery, Netflix, and NBCUniversal participated in the meeting and showed a willingness to modify their proposal on AI. The revised offer includes more project-specific protections and compensations for performers.
The meeting between Crabtree-Ireland and Lombardini today will determine whether these adjustments are enough to end the costly strike that has paralyzed Hollywood and resulted in the loss of 45,000 entertainment jobs, costing the California economy $67.5 billion.
In addition to AI negotiations, the parties also discussed an agreement on minimum rates. Initially, SAG-AFTRA sought an 11% increase, while the studios offered 7%. The guild has now adjusted its request to around 9%, and both sides appear to converge at about 8%.
The studios’ latest offer, described as “historic” by some, includes a multi-decade wage increase and a 100% raise in performance compensation bonuses for high-budget streaming series and movies. However, the guild has expressed concerns about the thresholds set for these bonuses, considering them too high for many of their members.
With the possibility of a resolution on the horizon, today’s meeting between Crabtree-Ireland and Lombardini is crucial in finalizing the AI language and reaching an agreement.