SAG’S N.Y. Division Turns Up Pressure on Hollywood Brethren

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The New York division of the Screen Actors Guild is threatening to call in a federal mediator on Aug. 25 to help reach a contract agreement if the Los Angeles-based negotiators can't get a deal signed by then.

That demand came after a statement was sent to members late Friday from SAG negotiator Doug Allen, in which he stated SAG negotiators and “industry representatives” have had informal negotiations recently. He added that SAG negotiators believe that the “majority of issues” between actors and producers have been resolved.

But that assertion was quickly and bluntly contradicted by the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. The AMPTP states that no talks, formal or informal, have taken place since the producers gave actors a “last, best” offer on June 30.

After that SAG-AMPTP exchange, the New York division—which has four board members compared with the 11 in the Hollywood division—issued its motion. It criticized the Allen and union president Alan Rosenberg (pictured) for failing to bargain realistically with the AMPTP and for refusing to “remove unrealistic goals” from the bargaining table. SAG leadership is pursuing a course that is more about politics and less about a beneficial contract, stated the New York division.

Meanwhile, members who were hurt during the production shutdown caused by the strike by the Writers Guild of America at the beginning of the year are being hurt again, according to the New York division, because studios are not proceeding with movies and other productions for fear of another production shutdown.

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