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SAG-AFTRA Starts Strike Preparations One Week Before Extended Contract Negotiations Deadline

Hollywood actors are starting to prepare for picket planning should negotiations between SAG-AFTRA and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) end in a stalemate, Deadline is reporting. If a deal can’t be reached, the actors will enter a strike alongside screenwriters in the WGA.

The news comes after SAG-AFTRA and the AMPTP agreed this past Friday to extend the 2020 TV/Theatrical contracts by a week, until midnight PT this Wednesday, July 12. The guilds agreed to extend their current film and TV contract to allow bargaining on a new deal to continue. Talks between SAG-AFTRA and the AMPTP continued this past weekend and on Monday, before the Fourth of July holiday.

Actors are reportedly working on picket signs and ordering T-shirts, and putting together a list of lot captains and coordinators. The WGA captains and coordinators have been spearheading the logistics of the writers strike, which is now on its 66th day. They’re organizing each day’s actions outside studios in both Los Angeles and New York City.

SAG-AFTRA has not yet to officially reached out to the WGA to seek help in its planning and logistics for its potential strike. However, a number of WGA members have reportedly offered to help SAG-AFTRA captains and coordinators should the actors guild decides to strike. SAG-AFTRA members are also expected to join the WGA at established studio picket sites, which would require the writers to also add one more staffer at each location.

Ninety-eight percent of SAG-AFTRA members voted in favor of authorizing a strike if leadership fails to reach an acceptable deal. If the guild does ultimately agree to strike, it’s expected to begin picketing on the morning of Thursday, July 13.

SAG-AFTRA also reportedly sent its members an email over the July 4th weekend, which asked them to join the pickets yesterday at CBS Radford. The event is said to have resulted in a large turnout.

Staff from the actors guild arrived at the site to set up its own table alongside the WGA, but didn’t alert the writers about their plans in advance. However, the WGA eagerly welcomed SAG-AFTRA members.

A strike between the Writers Guild and the Screen Actors Guild has occurred in the past, before SAG merged with AFTRA in 2012. In 1960, the WGA was in the midst of a five-month strike when SAG president Ronald Regan called for the actors guild’s own strike.

Check out more of Karen Benardello’s articles.

Karen Benardello
Karen Benardellohttps://cinemadailyus.com
As a life-long fan of films and television shows, and an endless passion for writing, Karen Benardello decided to combine the two for a career. She graduated from New York's LIU Post with a B.F.A in Journalism, Print and Electronic in 2008. Karen has since been working in the press in New York City, including interviewing film and television casts and crews, writing movie and television news articles and reviewing films and televisions series. Some of her highlights include attending such local events as the Tribeca Film Festival, the New York Film Festival and New York Comic-Con, as well as traveling across North America to attend such festivals as the Sundance Film Festival, SXSW and the Toronto International Film Festival. She has been a member of the Women Film Critics Circle since 2012, and the New York Film Critics Online since 2019.


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