The Hollywood actors’ strike ends as the union reaches a tentative agreement with the studios

LOS ANGELES – Hollywood’s actors’ union reached a tentative deal with studios on Wednesday to end a strike, bringing to a close months of labor disputes that brought the entertainment industry to a historic halt.

The three-year collective bargaining agreement must be approved by votes of the union’s board and its members in the coming days, but management said the strike will end at 12:01 a.m. Thursday.

At nearly four months, it was by far the longest strike ever for film and television actors.

More than 60,000 members of the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Performers went on strike on July 14, joining screenwriters who had walked off the job more than two months earlier. It was the first time the two unions had gone on strike together since 1960. The studios chose to negotiate with the writers first, working out a deal that their management marked as a major victory and ending their strike on September 26.

Terms of the agreement were not immediately released. SAG-AFTRA said details would be released after a meeting Friday where board members review the contract. Issues on the table included both short-term compensation and future royalty payments for film and television performances, along with control over actors’ images and likenesses recreated with artificial intelligence.

Executives from top entertainment companies including Disney, Netflix, Warner Bros. Discovery and Universal had a direct hand in the negotiations, which, like all Hollywood union negotiations, were led by the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers.

The end of the strike announcement came hours after Disney CEO Robert Iger and Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav reported their latest earnings. Both leaders said they hoped the strike would be resolved soon.

Disney shares rose based on its report, which said its net income rose 63% to $264 million in the quarter ended Sept. 30, up from $162 million a year earlier. Zaslav said on an earnings call that the studios’ latest offer “met virtually all of the union’s goals and includes the highest wage increase in 40 years.”

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Warner Bros. Discovery reported a loss and saw its shares fall 19% on Wednesday.

Although the writers’ strike had immediate, visible effects on viewers, including the months-long suspension of late-night talk shows and “Saturday Night Live,” the impact of the actors’ absence was not as apparent. But its ripple effects—delayed release dates and waiting for new show seasons—could be felt for months or even years.

Actors should quickly return to film sets where production was paused, including “Deadpool 3,” “Gladiator 2” and “Wicked.” Other films and series will restart filming when returning writers finish scripts.

And in addition to scripted productions, the end of the strike allows actors to return to red carpets, talk shows and podcasts as Hollywood awards season approaches.

“The SAG strike is over!! I can finally say it: watch my documentary Saturday night at 8 on HBO/MAX! actor-director Albert Brooks said on social media moments after the strike ended. “Couldn’t say a word until now!!”

The only major awards ceremony directly affected by the strike was the Emmys, which were moved from September to January. Now the autumn’s usual Oscar campaigns will be mobilized.

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But any sense of normalcy in the industry may prove to be temporary. The circumstances that led to the strikes – the shift from traditional theater and television media to streaming and new technology such as artificial intelligence – have not slowed down. And the gains from the strikes could embolden other Hollywood unions, or the same guilds in negotiations that will come up again in just a few years.

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Union leaders treated the strike as a watershed moment from the start, coming as it did amid wider labor struggles in other industries.

“I think it’s a conversation now about the culture of big business and how it treats everyone up and down the ladder in the name of profit,” SAG-AFTRA president and “The Nanny” star Fran Drescher told The Associated Press in August. interview.

Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, the managing director and chief negotiator who led the team that struck the deal for the guild, told the AP in August that he was “honored to help ensure that our members get a fair contract that will protect them going into the future and making sure that the 14-year-olds I spoke to on the Disney picket line still have the ability to be actors when they turn 18.”

The deal also means a return to the sets for thousands of film crew members who have nothing to do during the strikes. SAG-AFTRA tried to offset their difficulties by allowing sometimes controversial interim agreements for some smaller productions to continue and by making their strike relief fund available to all workers in the industry.


Associated Press Writer Krysta Fauria contributed to this report.


For more coverage of the actors’ and writers’ strike, visit: https://apnews.com/hub/hollywood-strikes/

By ANDREW DALTON, AP Entertainment Writer.

Associated Press Writer Krysta Fauria contributed to this report.

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