WGA Says Writers Can Return to Work, Approves New Labor Contract for Release

Guild members will be able to vote on the contract from Oct. 2-9

Writers face a real threat from AI.
Writers face a real threat from AI.

The Writers Guild of America West Board and East Council have unanimously voted to authorize writers to return to work at midnight on Wednesday and to receive the tentative agreement negotiated with Hollywood studios, effectively ending the union’s nearly five-month strike.

Among the key gains noted in the new agreement are a 26% increase in residuals and significant protections related to the non-consensual and uncompensated use of artificial intelligence.

The guild announced the vote in a membership memo published Tuesday afternoon that also provided topline details on the key gains won for writers during the five days of marathon negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers.

The WGA announced the deal with the AMPTP on Sunday, 146 days after writers first took to the picket lines outside of backlots and production offices in Los Angeles and New York. The writers were then joined by actors from SAG-AFTRA on July 14 after their union’s talks with the AMPTP failed to yield a deal.

While writers vote on their contract, studio insiders tell TheWrap that they expect talks with SAG-AFTRA to start sometime within the next two weeks after the guild has time to review the WGA deal with its negotiating committee and legal team. A spokesperson for SAG-AFTRA said that the union is not commenting on potential timetables for talks, but is urging AMPTP to return to the table to discuss a fair deal.

The WGA also noted that there would be meetings convening this week so that current members could hear from the Negotiating Committee, Council and Board while having the opportunity to ask questions about the agreement prior to the ratification vote. These meetings will be exclusively for current members in good standing who have worked under the Minimum Basic Agreement. These meetings will take place on Wednesday at 6:00 p.m. in New York City (at the Manhattan Center) and at 7:00 p.m. in Los Angeles at the Palladium. There will be a Zoom meeting on Thursday at 5:00 p.m. PST and another on Friday at 11:00 a.m.

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