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The Screen Actors Guild labor dispute of 2008-2009 is an ongoing labor dispute that could lead to a strike by the Screen Actors Guild, the American labor union (WP) representing actors in the film industry. The anticipated strike would be against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), a Wikipedia:trade organization that represents the interests of American film producers, production companies, and movie studios. A strike could stem from the handling of royalties from the sale of films distributed through Wikipedia:new media methods. This includes royalties earned from Internet[1] distribution services such as Wikipedia:iTunes, as well as DVD sales, neither of which are currently written into actors' contracts. The SAG contract expired on June 30, 2008 with the two sides still far from mutually agreeable terms.[2] The strike has been delayed several times due to the poor US economy.

SAG works without new contract: July 2008 - ballots/strike date

The strike date was originally set for July 2008, due to its coinciding with the expiration of contracts between the labor union and the AMPTP. Regardless, talks continued until July 16, and members of the Wikipedia:American Federation of Television and Radio Artists voted to renew their deal with the AMPTP; SAG opposed that deal due to the quasi-competitive nature of the two unions.[3] Since July 16, both sides have negotiated only sporadically, with SAG members continuing to work on television and movies under the terms of the expired contract. On November 22, 2008, the union's negotiating committee announced it was unable to come to an agreement with the AMPTP in a session with federal mediation, and has asked for a strike authorization vote.[4]

The Screen Actors Guild says it will send strike authorization Wikipedia:ballots to its 120,000 members on January 2, 2009. The votes will be counted on January 23, which will not be in time to potentially disrupt the Wikipedia:Golden Globe Awards like the writers' strike did last year. Approval by 75 percent of members is required to pass the measure. If approved, the SAG national board can call a strike. Guild President Wikipedia:Alan Rosenberg said in a statement that the future of professional actors is at stake. SAG remains at odds with Hollywood studios over treatment of Internet productions and actor benefits in the event of unplanned work stoppages.[5] The timing of the SAG strike-authorization vote may aid its passage. [6] As of December 9, the Screen Actors Guild has not yet called a strike.

Some shows may be affected by a possible upcoming strike.[7]

The Screen Actors Guild has delayed the strike authorization vote for after a meeting on January 12, 2009, pushing back the timeline by no more than two weeks.[8]

The Screen Actors Guild is at this moment planning to stop Wikipedia:Doug Allen and Alan Rosenberg from authorizing a strike vote.[9]

The Screen Actors Guild is holding an emergency meeting on the situation.[10]

Doug Allen may be ousted from the Screen Actors Guild.[11]

SAG President Alan Rosenberg has backed off from authorizing a strike vote and is beginning a vote on the latest contract offer from the AMPTP.

On January 23, 2009 the Actors Union lost support for a strike vote. Though the SAG hasn't officially revoked the call for a strike, the walkout chances are now slim.[12]

The SAG has moderated a file document that puts Doug Allen out of business.[13][14]

It's official. Doug Allen has been fired from the Screen Actors Guild.[15][16][17]

The SAG, the AMPTP and the Hollywood Studios have agreed to a meeting in Los Angeles next week.[18]

The meeting between the SAG and the AMPTP has been delayed because Alan Rosenberg is threatening to reinstate Doug Allen.[19]

An attempt to reinstate Doug Allen has been blocked.[20]

The ouster who got Doug Allen fired has returned to the SAG agenda.[21]

An attempt to reinstate Doug Allen has been denied a second time.[22][23]

The SAG is ready to resume talks with the AMPTP.[24]

It's official. Doug Allen has been fired from the Screen Actors Guild for the second time. Talks between the SAG and the AMPTP are expected to resume on Tuesday, February 17, 2009.[25][26][27]

The SAG and AMPTP are ready to resume negotiations.[28][29]

Alan Rosenberg's special appeal to halt negotiations between the SAG and the AMPTP has been denied.[30]

The SAG and AMPTP are to resume negotiations this Tuesday at Sherman Oaks.[31][32]

Talks between the SAG and AMPTP are finally underway.[33][34]

No resolution between the SAG and AMPTP has been reached, but the two sides have agreed to meet Thursday at 1:00PM Eastern/12:00PM Central.[35]

Talks between the SAG and the AMPTP have once again hit a real snag.

The Screen Actors Guild has rejected the latest contract offer.[36]

The SAG and the AMPTP need a third party to pass out the olive branches.[37]

A divided SAG board is urging leaders to send the final contract offer from movie and television producers to SAG members for a vote.[38][39][40][41]

The SAG and the AMPTP have reached a tentative deal.[42][43]

The SAG board approved the deal by a 53% vote.[44]

The Screen Actors Guild has approved a new contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers.[45]

Resistance to strike

The Screen Actors Guild's New York board, which split with the union's national leadership, urged members to oppose the strike because of the worsening U.S. economy.[46][47][48][49] A faction of the Screen Actors Guild wants the strike vote suspended indefinitely because of the economic crisis.[50] Over 100 actors have written a letter of protest to the Screen Actors Guild about the likely strike vote.[51][52][53] The Screen Actors Guild called a meeting on the New York board split on December 19, 2008.[54] Among the actors joining the strike resistance are Wikipedia:Robert Redford and Wikipedia:Russell Crowe.

Effect on film industry and independent film

Gradually, TV studios are shifting from the Screen Actors Guild to the Wikipedia:American Federation of Television and Radio Artists in case of a strike.[55] Because the unions involved represent many working film actors in America, industry leaders agree that if the strike does occur, film production (including scripted television programming) would be at a veritable standstill. Therefore, production companies are preparing for the strike by accelerating production of films and television episodes to stockpile enough material to continue regular film releases and TV schedules during the strike period. However, some Hollywood studios, such as The Jim Henson Company, are not affected by the strike, due to the terms of their contracts.[56] Also some shows such as reality shows like Wikipedia:The Amazing Race and soap operas Wikipedia:General Hospital and Wikipedia:The Young and The Restless, and regular shows like 90210, Wikipedia:Curb Your Enthusiasm, all shows on Nickelodeon including Wikipedia:SpongeBob SquarePants, Wikipedia:Victorious and Wikipedia:iCarly, all shows on Comedy Central including Wikipedia:South Park and Wikipedia:The Daily Show are also not affected. This is possibly due to the fact that the actors associated with those shows belong to AFTRA, a union that indirectly (or involuntarily) competes with SAG.


  1. "Hollywood producers blast actors over Internet clips issue",, 2008-05-08. Retrieved on 2008-05-10. 
  2. Wilkerson, David B.. "Producers break off contract talks with actors",, 2008-05-07. Retrieved on 2008-05-10. 
  3. "AFTRA Approves Three-Year AMPTP Pact", Broadcasting & Cable, 2008-07-08. Retrieved on 2008-07-08. 
  4. Hollywood Actors Guild to Seek Strike,, November 22, 2008
  5. [1], Screen Actors Guild sets strike vote on Jan. 2, December 10, 2008. Associated Press
  6. [2], Verrier, Richard. Timing of SAG strike authorization vote may aid passage, December 8, 2008. Los Angeles Times.
  7. The ABCs of a Possible SAG Strike,, December 18, 2008
  8. SAG Resets Strike Authorization Vote, TV Week, December 23, 2008
  9. SAG Moderates May Oust Allen,, January 12, 2009
  10. Actors' Guild Holds Emergency Meeting,, January 12, 2009
  11. Screen Actors Guild Faction Steps Up Pressure to Oust Leader Doug Allen, Los Angeles Times, January 20, 2009
  12. Actors Union Loses Support for Strike Vote, MSNBC, January 23, 2009
  13. SAG Moderates File Document to Fire National Executive Director, Huffington Post, January 26, 2009
  14. SAG Board Members Move to Oust Chief Negotiator, Los Angeles Times, January 26, 2009
  15. Doug Allen Steps Down From SAG Posts, Hollywood Reporter, January 26, 2009
  16. Fresh Cast In Place At Screen Actors Guild, Los Angeles Times, January 27, 2009
  17. Firing of Chief Negotiator Makes Strike By Actors Less Likely, The Denver Post, January 29, 2009
  18. SAG, Hollywood Studios to Meet Next Week in L.A., USA Today, January 28, 2009
  19. SAG, Studios Postpone Talks as Union President Threatens Lawsiut, Los Angeles Times, February 3, 2009
  20. SAG Motion Rejected; Judge Won't Reinstate Leader,, February 4, 2009
  21. Doug Allen's Ouster Back on SAG Agenda, Hollywood Reporter, February 4, 2009
  22. Judge Denies Move to Save SAG's Allen, Hollywood Reporter, February 5, 2009
  23. LA Judge Keeps Allen Out of SAG Negotiating Chain, MultiChannel News, February 6, 2009
  24. Actors' Union, Recast, Prepares to Resume Talks, New York Times, February 7, 2009
  25. SAG Again Votes to Oust Allen As Executive Director, Los Angeles Times, February 8, 2009
  26. SAG Reconfirms Chief Negotiator's Ouster,, February 8, 2009
  27. SAG Solidifies Ouster of Allen, Hollywood Reporter, February 8, 2009
  28. SAG Ready to Resume Talks with AMPTP, Hollywood Reporter, February 9, 2009
  29. SAG, Studios to Meet Next Week, Miami Herald, February 10, 2009
  30. Rosenberg's Appeal Denied, Hollywood Reporter, February 13, 2009
  31. SAG, Producers Resume Negotiations, Press-Telegram, February 16, 2009
  32. Actors, Producers Resume Contract Talks,, February 17, 2009
  33. Contract Talks Resume; Picketers Try to Influence SAG Negotiations,, February 17, 2009
  34. Actors, Producers Resume Contract Talks,, February 17, 2009
  35. SAG-AMPTP Talks Stretch Into the Night, Hollywood Reporter, February 18, 2009
  36. SAG Board Turns Down "Final Offer" from Hollywood Studios,, February 22, 2009
  37. SAG, AMPTP May Need Mediation, Hollywood Reporter, February 23, 2009
  38. Hollywood Board Urges SAG to Send Contract to Members,, March 11, 2009
  39. More Maneuvering Within Actors' Union, New York Times, March 10, 2009
  40. Screen Actors Guild Members Demonstrate at Warner Bros., ABC 7 Chicago, March 11, 2009
  41. Union Faction Guns for Strike,, March 11, 2009
  42. SAG, Producers Reach Tentative Contract Deal, Daily News, April 17, 2009
  43. Actors Union and Hollywood Producers Reach Deal, Reuters, April 17, 2009
  44. Actors Board Endorses Deal with Studios, ABC 7 Chicago, April 19, 2009
  45. SAG Members Ratify TV/Theatrical Agreements,, June 9, 2009
  46. Actors Guild Split on Strike Vote; New York Board Will Oppose,, December 13, 2008
  47. Actors Guild Split on Strike Vote; New York Board Opposes,, December 13, 2008
  48. Actors Strike Vote Opposed in New York,, December 13, 2008
  49. Actors Guild Faces Breakaway Group, Monterey Herald, December 14, 2008
  50. SAG Faction Wants Strike Vote Suspended,, December 14, 2008
  51. Stars Protest Possible SAG Strike,, December 15, 2008
  52. Clooney, Hanks Say Actors Should Drop Strike Vote,, December 15, 2008
  53. Baldwin, Hanks Urge Actors to Drop Strike Vote as Rift Deepens,, December 16, 2008
  54. Screen Actors Guild Calls December 19th Meeting on N.Y. Board Split,, December 14, 2008
  55. TV Studios Act on AFTRA Shift,, December 17, 2008
  56. Gorman, Steve. "Hollywood braces for possible actors strike", Wikipedia:Reuters, 2008-05-05. Retrieved on 2008-05-10. 

External links

[[Category:Entertainment industry strikes

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