Friday, November 9, 2007

WGA Striiiiiike

My friend and I went to Fox today where the WGA was having a HUGE protest. Something like 2,000-3,000 people. There were a lot of SGA members there; SGA was making a huge show of solidarity with the WGA.

Basically (and fairly simplistically), everyone is fighting over the revenue from Internet and emerging technologies. About 20 years ago, VHS came around. The big studios and the WGA came to an understanding: no one really knew what the business model would be, so they agreed to 4 cents per DVD (which is much less than what the DGA and SAG members get). In "The Biz" these are called residuals; every time you watch a movie on TV (or on the airplace, etc.) or you see a rerun of your favorite show, the people involved in putting that show together (actors, directors, writers) get money. The writers don't really get a lot, especially compared to the other groups. Seems fair, but there's more going on.

The big studios really don't like the guilds. They make life more difficult and more expensive. (Most actors and writers that belong to guilds are middle-class workers who get their health insurance and retirement through their guilds.) So right now, a lot of people are thinking "This would be a great time to break the guilds." Basically, this means things could get very, very sketchy, and go on for a while. It also means that the studios aren't going to give in easily. With SAG aligning themselves so strongly with WGA, I think it sends a very good message, and hopefully we can have this resolved before it completely destroys the economy of L.A. The last time there was a writer's strike a lot of people left LA, a lot of businesses closed, and people had to move. So let's hope people come to their senses. Now, on to the people you'd recognize supporting the writers!Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Legendary Writer Norman Lear.

This guy was AWESOME. The WGA Avenger.

Seth MacFarlane (Family Guy)

Kevin Rahm (Desperate Housewives, Judging Amy)

Stephen Webber (Studio 60, Wings)

Ron Rifkin (Alias)

I also saw Amanda Peet (with her new kid), Vincent Ventresca, Curtis Armstrong, William Baldwin, and was standing right next to David Fury.

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