The Screen Actors Guild is going to be joining its WGA sisters-in-arms. It was announced at 3 p.m. on July 13 that SAG-AFTRA will be going on strike beginning midnight on July 14. “We are being victimized by a very greedy entity,” SAG president Fran Drescher said at the union’s press conference. “I am shocked by the way that the people we have been working with us are treating us.” The list of demands by SAG for the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers included minimum pay raises and a reestablishment of “new media” (a.k.a. streaming) residuals. Outside finances, there were worries about how AI is developing, especially regarding payment if their work is being used to train AI, and the methodology of casting, specifically in regards to self-tape auditions. “At some point you have to say no,” Drescher said of the production companies. “You people are crazy.”
“I cannot believe it, quite frankly, how far apart we are on so many things,” The Nanny star continued. “How they plead poverty, that they’re losing money left and right, while giving hundreds of millions of dollars to their CEOs. It is disgusting. Shame on them. They stand on the wrong side of history at this very moment.” Earlier this month, actors including Meryl Streep and Jennifer Lawrence signed a letter to SAG-AFTRA leadership informing them of the measures they are willing to take in order for actors to get fair contracts (read: They’re ready to go on strike). The Writers Guild has been on strike since May 1, and Drescher specifically invoked other unions in her speech. “We stand in solidarity, in unprecedented unity — our union, our sister union, and unions around the world are standing by us, as well as other labor unions,” she declared. “Because at some point, the jig is up.”
This is a developing story.