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WGA, AMPTP Suspend Contract Talks for a Week as Strike Looms

Two sides will resume negotiations on April 25 — one week before current pact expires on May 1

Negotiations between the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) will be suspended for the week and resume next Tuesday, April 25, the guild announced Monday.

The guild, whose contract expires May 1, had been negotiating a new contract for film and TV writers with AMPTP, but those talks broke down toward the end of last month. The WGA’s negotiating committee called for a strike authorization vote March 24, and negotiations resumed on Monday after a two-week hiatus.

Los Angeles member meetings are set for April 18 and 19, while a New York meeting will also take place on April 19. An online strike authorization vote will begin April 19 at 8:30 p.m. PT through April 24 at noon PT.

Most recently, members of the WGA urged its members to vote “yes” on the strike authorization in a new video if negotiations fail.

“It’s very important for the members to support this strike-authorization vote,” WGA West board member Matthew Weiner said in the three-minute clip. “The negotiating committee has recommended it because they need as much solidarity as possible to achieve the aims of helping us to participate in the windfall we created in the last five years.”

Last week, the WGAW sent AT&T and Time Warner Cable shareholders a letter, warning them of the impact a strike could have on both earnings and the pending merger between the two. The letter opened with the WGA explaining that a work stoppage will commence on May 2 should no agreement between the WGA and the AMPTP.