SAG-AFTRA and Studio Strike Talks to Continue Sunday: ‘Things Are Feeling More Optimistic’

Guild and AMPTP leadership met for a third straight day Saturday as hopes for a resolution mount

SAG-AFTRA Strike Talks Studios AMPTP
(Getty Images, Christopher Smith/TheWrap)

SAG-AFTRA and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers will meet for a fourth straight day on Sunday, TheWrap has learned.

Guild and studio leadership, led by AMPTP CEO Carol Lombardini, met for a third day on Saturday, working into the weekend as hopes for an end to the 107-day labor strike mount.

“Things are feeling more optimistic,” one studio insider familiar with the day’s proceedings told TheWrap.

Saturday’s meeting — held virtually and absent of the four CEOs previously present: Disney’s Bob Iger, Warner Bros. Discovery’s David Zaslav, NBCUniversal Donna Langley and Netflix’s Ted Sarandos — was said to be constructive. SAG-AFTRA is understood to have presented its latest response; next, it is the studio’s turn to deliver.

The core issues at hand remained the same, and Saturday was an opportunity to dive deep and work toward a resolution for the end of the month. While union and studio leadership have met four out of the last five days and talks this week have so far gone well, the industry is fast-approaching a critical juncture.

After the studios abruptly suspended negotiations two weeks ago over the guild’s proposed streaming revenue-sharing plan, which AMPTP leaders characterized as a “levy” on streaming services, one studio insider told TheWrap this week that AMPTP leaders are considering a return to brinksmanship negotiations if there’s not a deal by Halloween.

In that event, according to the insider, AMPTP may walk away from talks yet again, with January being the earliest they’d consider returning. At minimum, it would effectively ensure there will not be a normal 2023-2024 season for scripted television programs, and likely Hollywood business would halt again.

In response to that reporting, SAG-AFTRA’s lead negotiator, Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, told TheWrap Thursday afternoon that the guild’s “laser-focus” is on the talks, and not on what he dismissed as “rumors and whisper campaigns.”

SAG-AFTRA also promoted a series of prominent members Saturday staying strong as negotiations carry on, tweeting, “New York #SagAftraMembers are sending a powerful message of support to our Negotiating Committee. We trust you wholeheartedly, and we’ve got your back, just like you’ve got ours! Together, we’re undeniably #SagAftraStrong! 💪🤝Thank you, Negotiating Committee!”

For all of TheWrap’s Hollywood strike coverage, click here.

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