MOVIE NEWS – After 148 days of strike action, the interim agreement between the WGA and the AMPTP was ratified yesterday, officially ending the 2023 writers’ strike.
The 2023 WGA strike is finally over. The strike began on 2 May, when negotiations between the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and the Association of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) failed to reach a new contract. The Writers Guild went on strike for a total of 148 days, fighting for issues such as fair pay, AI regulation, better streaming standards and greater transparency on streaming viewing figures. The two sides reached a preliminary agreement on 27 September.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, this tentative agreement was ratified by a vote, officially ending the 2023 writers’ strike.
Ninety-nine per cent of the WGA membership voted in favour of the new agreement. The new contract, which took effect provisionally on 25 September, will run until 1 May 2026, when it will be renegotiated.
What does the end of the WGA strike mean?
After the WGA strike began, the writers stopped work. This affected many projects that were already in production or in the pre-production stage. Production has been paused or delayed on several film and television titles in the pipeline. These include Marvel’s Blade, Disney’s Tron: Ares, season 2 of Andor and season 15 of Bob’s Burgers. Other series had their writers’ rooms closed before filming could begin, including Abbott Elementary season 3 and Grey’s Anatomy season 20.
The end of the strike means that some productions affected by the strike will reopen their writers’ rooms. Other productions, such as late-night talk shows, have already resumed. The writers’ rooms have reopened after the announcement of the preliminary agreement.
However, the majority of productions are still on strike, as the largest Screen Actors’ Guild (SAG-AFTRA) is still on strike, having joined the WGA in a picket line in July.
Despite the end of the 2023 writers’ strike, WGA East President Lisa Takeuchi Cullen announced that “WGA members will be on the picket lines and will be walking alongside SAG-AFTRA”. SAG-AFTRA is currently on strike over many of the same basic issues as writers. Including fair pay, streaming transparency and AI regulation, and their demands have yet to be met. However, as soon as an agreement is reached for actors, productions can resume. (Barring other potentially imminent industry strikes…)