The WGA and AMPTP used every last minute in the allotted negotiating timetable and then some to sort out whether or not Hollywood would be shut down by a strike for the first time since 2007. At nearly 1 a.m. on May 2, we learned that an agreement was reached, and another strike had been averted. After weeks of negotiations, the Writers Guild of America and the Alliance of Motion Pictures and Television Producers announced that they have come to a deal for a new three-year contract. As Deadline reports, “Details are still sketchy, but the agreement is expected to save the WGA’s ailing health plan and provide more money and protections for writers of short-order TV shows. The deal now goes to the WGA West’s board and the WGA East’s council for approval, and then to the guilds’ members for ratification.”
The WGA and AMPTP first started negotiating on March 13, but discussions went into overdrive in the last week after WGA members voted to authorize a strike on April 24. The key issues at stake have included the guild’s health-care coverage, which is funded in part by the AMPTP and is currently running deficits, and the new economics of peak TV, in which networks tend to order fewer episodes per season, decreasing writers’ salaries as a result. While no specifics have been shared, it seems like both of those massive issues have been addressed to the satisfaction of both parties.