After a gruelling 146-day strike, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP)—which represents the major studios—have broken their deadlock and reached a tentative deal. This step towards resolving the conflict—which had brought television and film production to a standstill—came through on Sunday night after five consecutive days of negotiations between the two parties, according to Variety.
The WGA negotiating committee shared the news with all its members via email. “We have reached a tentative agreement on a new 2023 Minimum Basic Agreement, which is to say an agreement in principle on all deal points, subject to drafting final contract language,” the email stated. “We can say, with great pride, that this deal is exceptional – with meaningful gains and protections for writers in every sector of the membership.”
The lawyers representing the WGA and AMPTP hashed out the finer details around complicated and groundbreaking additions to the WGA’s Minimum Basic Agreement, which included higher wages for streaming content, concessions from studios on minimum staffing for television shows, and a guarantee on limiting the use of artificial intelligence and safeguarding the credits and compensation of the writers. Guild members will vote on whether to accept the deal and officially call off the strike on Tuesday. Till then, the strike will continue to go on. However, picketing has been suspended as of Sunday night.
Even if the deal gets signed, a major chunk of Hollywood will continue to abstain from work given that tens of thousands of actors remain on strike, and no talks between the actors’ union, SAG-AFTRA, and the studios have been scheduled. The only productions that could restart in short order would be ones without actors, including late-night shows hosted by Jimmy Fallon and Stephen Colbert.