Tentative writers deal will be for 3 years

Posted May 13, 2017

The guild also secured another first-time addition to its contract with producers: job protection for WGA members on parental leave. The deal came after a flurry of last-minute bargaining, conducted during a media blackout that offered no tangible details about whether picket lines would go up until after midnight Tuesday. Members overall will net $130 million more over the contract's life than they were expected to accept, according to the memo. Last month, the WGA voted to authorize their union to call a strike.

The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers represents entertainment giants such as Comcast Corp, Walt Disney Co, CBS Corp, Viacom Inc, Time Warner Inc and Twenty-First Century Fox Inc.

The parties reached the deal in the early hours of Tuesday morning after agreeing to extend negotiations for an extra 10 minutes beyond the Monday midnight deadline. Well, you might remember that there was a distinct lack of new movies and TV shows that year because of the Writers Guild of America Strike.

If that had happened, viewers likely would have first noticed the effects of a strike with that evening's late-night talk shows, where the likes of Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel depend on writing staffs for topical monologues and sketches.

A prolonged strike however, like the 100-day WGA stoppage in 2007 and 2008, would mean that "weaker media companies with limited financial flexibility could see their credit standing suffer", the Moody's report said.

Although film productions might have been temporarily halted, the biggest area where the proposed strike would have damaged is late night comedy shows like Jimmy Fallon, Conan O'Brien and Stephen Colbert.

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Are you relieved to hear we wont have to endure that again?

It was a cliffhanger ending, but the Writers Guild of America and the studios have reached a new deal that will keep the scripts coming and Hollywood at work.

The contract for TV and film writers is now expired, with no indication if talks will continue or if a strike is imminent. The action cost the economy of Los Angeles an estimated $2.5 billion.

Writer-actress Lena Dunham said she would back a strike this time. However, a prolonged walkout eventually would have affected feature films, which are fewer in number and have longer-range production timetables.

It's a win for the networks and advertisers, too, in advance of their upfronts, which get underway May 15, and deals can now be made without the uncertainties of a strike clouding the picture.