27th September 2023 – (Los Angeles) After almost five months of intense negotiations, the leaders of Hollywood’s writers union have declared an end to their strike. The governing boards of both the eastern and western branches of the Writers Guild of America (WGA) voted to accept a contract agreement with the studios, paving the way for writers to resume work starting at 12.01am Wednesday.
While the writers still need to ratify the contract through a vote, the decision to lift the strike allows them to continue working during this process. The Writers Guild communicated this development to its members in an email, bringing a sense of relief and optimism among the writing community.
However, it’s important to note that the strike by Hollywood actors is still ongoing, with no immediate talks on the horizon. Nevertheless, actors who were picketing on Tuesday for the first time since the tentative deal between writers and studios was reached expressed renewed hope and a spirit of optimism.
Marissa Cuevas, an actor known for her appearances in TV series such as “Kung Fu” and “The Big Bang Theory,” shared her thoughts, saying, “For a hot second, I really thought that this was going to go on until next year. Knowing that at least one of us has gotten a good deal gives a lot of hope that we will also get a good deal.”
While the picket lines for writers have been suspended, they were encouraged to show solidarity with actors. Many writers joined actors on the picket lines on Tuesday, including Matthew Weiner, the creator of “Mad Men,” who has been supporting the strikes alongside his friend, “ER” actor Noah Wyle.
Weiner acknowledged the importance of the actors’ involvement, stating, “We would never have had the leverage we had if SAG had not gone out. They were very brave to do it.”
In a related development, striking actors recently voted to expand their walkout to include the lucrative video game market. This move puts additional pressure on Hollywood studios to reach a resolution with performers who provide voices, motion capture work, and stunts for video games.
The Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Radio and Television Artists (SAG-AFTRA) announced the decision to strike against video game companies if ongoing negotiations fail. An overwhelming 98 per cent of its members voted in favour of this action. Talks are scheduled for Tuesday to address the issues at hand.
The negotiations in the video game industry mirror some of the key concerns raised during the broader actors’ strike, including wages, safety measures, and protections regarding the use of artificial intelligence. Major gaming companies such as Activision, Electronic Arts, Epic Games, Take 2 Productions, as well as Disney and Warner Bros.’ video game divisions are involved in these discussions.