The Writers Guild of America, which went on strike in May 2023, is currently on its 115th day of protesting the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers for providing them with essentials like AI protection, writers room minimums, and increased transparency regarding metrics for streaming platforms.

The WGA has received a lot of backing from celebrities and others all across the world, who agree that the writers are asking for the right thing. There were reportedly discussions concerning the WGA and AMPTP negotiations, but they only served to inflame the public’s fury towards Disney CEO Bob Iger. Let’s learn more.

Also read: Scared of Your Favorite Marvel/DC Movie Getting Delayed? Writers Strike Gets a Positive Update

WGA are on 115th Day of their strike

“We remain committed to direct negotiations with the companies”: WGA on ongoing negotiations with AMPTP

On Wednesday, the Writers Guild of America stated that the latest counteroffer by the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers for a new contract is neither nothing nor nearly enough. They said that the companies have come closer but not close enough to meet their requested demands on key issues.

In talking about protection against AI, the guild said, they have had real discussions and seen movement on their part regarding AI protection. But they are not yet where they need to be, but at the same time, the companies have confirmed that the generative artificial intelligence is not a person, which is why any material written by GAI will not be considered as literary material under any Minimum Basic Agreement.

WGA claims AMPTP want them to cave in

The AMPTP said, “The revised proposal provides important safeguards to prevent writers from being disadvantaged if any part of the script is based on GAI-produced material, so that the writer’s compensation, credit and separate rights will not be affected by the use of GAI-produced material.” The Guild replied by claiming that the companies continue to refuse to regulate the use of their work to train AI to write new content for a motion picture.

One of the other issue that was noted was the problem with the definition of showrunner itself. It has been known that some streamers have begun making the showrunner position a non-writing one and making the producer or director the default showrunner and are simply hiring a head writer to run the writer’s room. The guild argues that it would take the writers out of the decision-making process entirely.

Also read: “We don’t take that lightly”: Disney Celebrates $850 Million Success While Warner Bros Remain Desperate For a Box Office Hit

Writers Guild of America claims AMPTP called the meeting to get them to cave

In a lengthy statement shared by the Writers Guild of America, the highly anticipated meeting between the guild, the AMPTO, and CEOs of Disney, Netflix, Universal Pictures, and Warner Bros. Discovery was nothing but a setup to get the guild to cave.

The statement further noted that the AMPTO president Carol Lombardini said in the meeting after introducing the proposals, “We have come to the table with an offer that meets the priority concerns the writers have expressed. We are deeply committed to ending the strike and are hopeful that the WGA will work toward the same resolution.”

WGA’s demands are essential for writers

The guild noted that in the meeting, they were lectured about how good their single and only counteroffer was, but the guild had explained to the authorities the limitations and the loopholes and omissions failed to protect writers from the existential threats that caused them to hold up a strike in the first place. They said,

“This was a meeting to get us to cave, which is why, not twenty minutes after we left the meeting, the AMPTP released its summary of their proposals. This was the companies’ plan from the beginning – not to bargain, but to jam us. It is their only strategy – to bet that we will turn on each other.”

Also read: “All great comedies start with great writers”: Two Broke Girls Star Jennifer Coolidge Supports Writers Strike 2023, Wants Hollywood to Listen to Their Demands

Disney CEO Bob Iger receives backlash after being displeased with WGA

According to reports, Bob Iger was very displeased after the Writers Guild of America refused to accept the latest AMPTP’s offer. The WGA has demanded 0.18% of the average studio’s annual revenue but the studios are not ready for that kind of change.

After it was revealed, the fans took to their social media and Iger received backlash for not being able to act sensible along with his panel to negative the right things for the writers. The CEO of Disney had mentioned earlier during his appearance on CNBC’s Squawk Box, that the WGA along with SAG-AFTRA, who are also on strike, are not being realistic. He said,

WGA's refusal to the counteroffer has upset Bob Iger
WGA’s refusal to the counteroffer has upset Bob Iger

“It’s very disturbing to me. We’ve talked about disruptive forces in this business and all the challenges we’re facing, the recovery from COVID which is ongoing, it’s not completely back. This is the worst time in the world to add to that disruption.”

He continued that everyone managed during the pandemic and as an industry to negotiate a very good deal with the directors’ guild that reflected the value that the directors contribute to the business. “We wanted to do the same thing with the writers, and we’d like to do the same thing with the actors. There’s a level of expectation that they have that is just not realistic. And they are adding to the set of the challenges that this business is already facing that is, quite frankly, very disruptive.”

The CEO added that the unions should be realistic about the business environment and what the business can deliver. In addition Netflix’s Ted Sarandos also seemed concerned with agreeing to terms that will used to set a precedent for other territories where Netflix has heavily invested in local production.

Source: Deadline

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