Why It Matters: The actors have the same worries as the writers.
Many of the actors’ concerns echo what the Writers Guild of America is fighting for: higher wages; increased residual payments for their work, specifically for content on streaming services; and protections against using actors’ likenesses without permission as part of the enhanced abilities of artificial intelligence. According to the writers, the studios offered little more than “annual meetings to discuss” artificial intelligence, and they refused to bargain over limits on the technology.
The Directors Guild, in contrast, said on Sunday that it had reached a “groundbreaking agreement confirming that A.I. is not a person and that generative A.I. cannot replace the duties performed by members.” Details about what that meant were not revealed.
Background: It has been a long time since the last actors’ strike.
The last time the actors went on strike was in 2000, in a dispute over commercial pay. The strike lasted close to six months.
What’s Next: Negotiations begin on Wednesday.
With negotiations expected to begin on Wednesday, SAG-AFTRA is bullish about what this strike authorization means. “We’re obviously coming in from a position of strength, but we’re not looking to strike,” said Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, the union’s chief negotiator. “We’re here to make a deal.” He added: “But we’re also not going to accept anything less than what our members deserve. If a strike is necessary to achieve that, we’re prepared.”
The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers said in a statement that “we are approaching these negotiations with the goal of achieving a new agreement that is beneficial to SAG-AFTRA members and the industry overall.”