Saturday, March 25, 2017

Looming Job Action?

Deadline reported yesterday:

... The labor tension in Hollywood is at a 10-year high. As the scribes now confirm Deadline’s exclusive of earlier today that a strike-authorization vote has been called, the producers shot back this evening with claims of bad faith from the other side of the table. ...

However, Deadline has learned that the AMPTP believed earlier that week that further talks would not be productive. The producers’ reps did not respond to requests for comment on this matter.

Earlier tonight, the WGA’s negotiators sent a letter to membership calling for a strike-authorization vote. It would not be a vote to strike but to authorize the guild’s board of directors to call a strike if further talks fail to produce a deal.

A strike vote had been looking like a real possibility this afternoon, according to Deadline’s Dominic Patten and David Robb, with one source with intimate knowledge of the ongoing talks saying, “That’s the way the wind is blowing.” A strike-authorization vote among senior WGA officials takes the situation to a precipice Hollywood has not really been at since 2007. ...

The WGA has initiated multiple strikes, but they've all happened at oddly specific times:

There weren’t any WGA strikes during the presidencies of Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter, Lyndon Johnson or John F. Kennedy. But there was one during the presidency of George W. Bush (the 100 day strike of 2007-08, pictured above); three during Ronald Reagan’s presidency (the 22-week strike of 1988, the two-week strike of 1985 and the 13-week strike of 1981); one during Richard Nixon’s (the 16-week strike of 1973); and one during Dwight Eisenhower’s (the 21-week strike of 1960).

Is there something in the air or water when Republican Presidents occupy the White House? Difficult to say, but the Guild has had lengthy work stoppages over the last fifty-eight years, and they all happened while Dwight, Dick, Ron or George were in office. If writers go out in the first six months of Donald Trump, the record will be intact.

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