The past few weeks have been intense, and for a while, it looked like we were headed for another writers strike, but thankfully at the last minute a deal was reached.
Writers Guild of America reached a tentative deal early in the morning on Tuesday for a fresh contract with the major Hollywood studios. The deal still needs to be ratified by guild members, but it’s all expected to go smoothly.
In a memo to its members, the WGA explained the contract is packed with several upgrades. This new contract gives writers the respect they deserve in the industry.
“In it, we made gains in minimums across the board – as well as contribution increases to our Health Plan that should ensure its solvency for years to come. And we further expanded our protections in Options and Exclusivity.
We also made unprecedented gains on the issue of short seasons in television, winning a definition (which has never before existed in our MBA) of 2.4 weeks of work for each episodic fee. Any work beyond that span will now require additional payment for hundreds of writer-producers.
We won a 15% increase in Pay TV residuals, roughly $15 million in increases in High-Budget SVOD residuals, and, for the first time ever, residuals for comedy-variety writers in Pay TV.
And, also for the first time ever, job protection on Parental Leave.”
This is wonderful news for everyone in Hollywood. Studios don’t have to shut down production, crew members will still have work, writers get better contracts, and the audience will still have content to consume.
It’s a good Tuesday, folks. And I think we should all listen to the best song about a Tuesday ever produced…