The Point

The Point

The Point

Entertainment Strikes Disrupt Fall TV

On May 2, 2023, the Writer’s Guild of America (WGA) went on strike over labor disputes with the Alliance of Motion Pictures and Television Producers (AMPTP). 

The WGA negotiated for better pay from streaming shows, language governing the use of artificial intelligence and other labor protections.

After 128 days, a tentative agreement was reached on Sept. 27, 2023, allowing the production of films and many popular shows to resume. 

“There is a collective sigh of relief now that the WGA is back at work,” President of Sony Music Film Division Spring Aspers said.

Story continues below advertisement

The WGA agreement is just one piece of the very complex relationship between the entertainment industry and their audiences. As an added obstacle, the actor’s union, SAG-AFTRA, also decided to strike on July 14, 2023 over similar issues and have been unable to reach a tentative agreement thus far. 

This means that daytime talk shows, such as “The Drew Barrymore Show” and late-night talk shows, such as “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” will be able to resume working—however, the production of scripted shows and films using actors who are members of SAG-AFTRA will remain halted until an agreement is reached. 

Due to the uncertain timeline of SAG-AFTRA reaching an agreement, several networks have scrapped plans to have new seasons of popular shows this fall. 

“I feel very sad about the strike and delays because I’ve been looking forward to watching the new seasons of my favorite shows,” sophomore Rylee Rodriguez said.

The unpredictability of the negotiation timeline between the members of SAG-AFTRA and executives leaves the networks in limbo to face the decision of shelving fully filmed and edited programs. 

Streaming services are now rationing the release of new content as the duration of the SAG-AFTRA strike continues with no end in sight. If the actors in SAG-AFTRA cannot return to work, production of their shows will remain halted. 

This is unfortunate news for the fans because, after all, what’s “Euphoria” without Zendaya or “Stranger Things” without Millie Bobby Brown? 

SAG-AFTRA is also facing uncertainty surrounding their annual awards show, the Screen Actors Guild Awards, which has a tentative air date set for February 24, 2024. 

“When the strike began in July, studios and networks were notified that all SAG Awards For Your Consideration campaigning would be paused until further notice. This applies to events, screening invites, DVDs and digital screeners,” stated the Union in an email dated Oct. 11, 2023 to members of the Nominating Committee.

“Each year, members look forward to receiving the promotional materials and, unfortunately, due to the inability of the studios to reach an acceptable resolution, that has not been the case this year,” stated Kristina Walsh, a SAG-AFTRA member and member of the Nominating Committee.

As of the time of this writing, negotiations between SAG-AFTRA and executives have broken down with both sides being further away from reaching an acceptable resolution than ever. 

About the Contributor
Sloane Houterman, Reporter