WGA and studios make progress in bargaining session, but no deal yet

Wendy Lee and Meg James, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Business News

LOS ANGELES — The Writers Guild of America and major studio representatives met Friday for the third consecutive day, as throngs of film and television screenwriters hit picket lines in a show of solidarity and hope that the sides would reach a deal to end the epic strike that has thrown tens of thousands of people out of work.

Around 8:30 p.m., entertainment company chiefs, studio negotiators and WGA negotiating committee members wrapped up another long bargaining day, but there was still no agreement on a new contract, people close to the negotiations told the L.A. Times.

Progress was made to close the gaps remaining between the WGA and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, which represents the major Hollywood studios in labor negotiations.

WGA said it would meet with the AMPTP again Saturday.

“Thank you for the wonderful show of support on the picket lines today!” WGA’s negotiating committee wrote in a note to members Friday night. “It means so much to us as we continue to work toward a deal that writers deserve.”

AMPTP had no comment Friday.


The two sides have been negotiating for a new contract that would end the writers’ strike, which has stretched for more than 140 days, crippling much of the entertainment economy by shutting down scripted TV and movie production.

While the recent string of lengthy talks has shown progress, the writers and the studios had yet to reach compromises on at least one or two key issues by the end of Friday’s gathering. Throughout the day, the conversations centered on minimum staffing in writers rooms and streaming data disclosures for the purposes of establishing a payment system based on viewership. Friday’s meeting began about 11 a.m.

The duration of the strikes and the drama surrounding the negotiations have been a roller coaster for workers, including writers, actors, directors and below-the-line crew, who are waiting for a deal to come together so they can return to their trades.

The sides began negotiating Wednesday for the first time since late August. In a sign of the studios’ eagerness to end the work stoppage, top executives from four entertainment giants joined the meetings: Walt Disney Co.’s Bob Iger, Warner Bros. Discovery’s David Zaslav, Netflix’s Ted Sarandos and NBCUniversal’s Donna Langley.


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