January 7 2008

WGA Strike Week 9

WGAI haven’t touched heavily on the Writer’s Guild of America (WGA) strike the past couple of weeks due to the holidays, but it’s time for another roundup of what’s going on because now people are showing their fangs.

As I mentioned in my post, Return of the Late Night Talk Shows, Leno admitted to writing his monologue, and that this seemed to surprise the WGA as it violates the strike rules. Not much seemed to happen about it, but now the rank-and-file writers have complained, and the WGA has had talks with Leno, and this may be followed up with some sort of punishment.

As a member of the WGA, Mr. Leno is not allowed to write material during the strike, but NBC says he is allowed to write and perform for himself. I’m betting this is where the problem is in that he is actually performing for NBC as they own the show.

But, that’s not where the fun ends! It appears Leno and Jimmy Kimmel have been whining to the WGA about the fact that David Letterman and Craig Ferguson have their writers due to the interim agreement reached with Worldwide Pants. Well, whine all you want, but it’s allowed. If Leno and Kimmel should be whining to anyone, it’s their corporate bosses, NBC and ABC respectively, and to the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers (AMPTP). They are the people not negotiating, and they are the ones who last threw a wrench into the works.

So Leno and Kimmel’s solution to this whole debacle? Why, to be guests on each other show’s this Thursday night, of course! Yeah, that’ll show them!

United ArtistsBut it’s not just TV where things are popping. According to Deadline Hollywood, United Artists, now run by… Tom Cruise, has struck their own deal with the WGA. This deal is only in place until the strike is over, and if the final overall deal would be more favorable to UA, they will be able to switch over to that deal. Rumor is the other studios are furious… boo hoo. Get the AMPTP to head back to the bargaining table, with a real deal, and you can have your writers back also.

Any way you slice it, things are a mess, and I only shared the tip of the iceberg with everyone. For the lowdown on everything that’s happening, there’s no better source than DeadlineHollywoodDaily.

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