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1 November, 2007 / Erik

In the Strike Zone

A little background: The WGA (the Writer’s Guild) Contract with the AMPTP* (the Management) ended at midnight last night. With the two groups deadlocked over an increase in residual payments on DVD and internet downloads, it’s looking more likely that the writers will go on strike. This is why only one show has been canceled from the new fall line-ups this year. It’s also part of the reason why Heroes: Origins is a no go.

Source: Hollywood Reporter: “Fears of a writers strike may have already contributed to a decision NBC made Wednesday to pull the highly anticipated spinoff miniseries of its hit “Heroes” from a midseason launch.

NBC declined comment, but “Heroes: Origins” is not going to get its six-episode run, which was expected to start as early as late April. While the network hasn’t officially canceled the spinoff, producers of the series have been given no indication of when it might get a spot on the schedule.”

Ive been told a lot of young writers are pissed off. This means they can’t break into the industry until the dispute is resolved. The guild, however, has a rule for non-members that makes using the strike as an in impossible:

“The Guild does not have the authority to discipline non-members for strike breaking and/or scab writing. However, the Guild can and will bar that writer from future Guild membership. This policy has been strictly enforced in the past and has resulted in convincing many would-be strike breakers to refrain from seriously harming the Guild and its members during a strike. Therefore, it is important for you to report to the Guild the name of any non-member whom you believe has performed any writing services for a struck company and as much information as possible about the non-member’s services.”

For some striking writers, there is a safety net of comics, another potential avenue for the new writer closed shut during strike season. Sounds rough, huh? Here’s the rub, if you’re serious about become a writer for film or television, you have to respect this action. One day, you’ll be a member of the guild and looking to protect your fair share of the money.

Also, when the networks go dark and you only get new episodes of Deal or No Deal or Phenomenon, remember it actually is for the greater good.

Well, the greater good for a writer’s bank account, anyway.

*The Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers


One Comment

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  1. Shannon / Nov 9 2007 6:49 am

    Besides once Deal or No Deal takes over, I can always pick up those books I ignored while watching Heros…

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