Hollywood on Strike! (Actors' Civil War!)

All the dirt. All the top secret stuff. Anything that has to do with the process of getting us to sit and watch something projected on the big screen.

Postby Leckomaniac on Sun Nov 04, 2007 12:34 am

DennisMM wrote:I'm not even supposed to be here!


I suddenly feel like this is Clerks!
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Postby Fievel on Sun Nov 04, 2007 12:51 am

DennisMM wrote:
LaDracul wrote:Excuse me, but let's behave like grownups. I don't rag on what you like.


LaDracul wrote:Okay, just wanted to know if you were being douches or not...I had problems with those CHUD a-holes and I didn't want to go through with that again...


Lots of Zoners give each other some grief because one thinks another likes bad stuff. If you enjoy and defend something others think is bad - especially if the work or the creator/performer is widely derided by both movie buffs and the critics - expect some ribbing and possibly some more serious criticism. Expect it especially if you criticize something that's considered approximately as good as what you enjoy.

Caveat fanboy/fangirl.


That should be posted at the beginning of every thread.

I was definitely being a douche, but as you can tell by my screen name, I'm a Don Bluth Douche and that makes my doucheness sweet and endearing. It's just good-natured ribbing. If there was a user named TravoltaLover, or even better TravoltasLover, I (and likely the rest of The Zone) would be making Travolta cracks all the time. Okay, bad example because that would demand to be cruel.

I love the Star Wars films and don't find The Empire Strikes Back to be the best of the Original Trilogy. Not to mention that I find Episode Three to be my second favorite Star Wars film. There, I've said it. That's about as bad as liking Van Helsing in these parts! :wink: :D

But yeah, everything Dennis said is right on.
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Postby Fievel on Sun Nov 04, 2007 12:58 am

Fievel wrote: If there was a user named...... TravoltasLover


And there isn't.
Oh to have an alt....
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Postby Chairman Kaga on Sun Nov 04, 2007 1:14 am

Fievel wrote: Not to mention that I find Episode Three to be my second favorite Star Wars film.

I'm with you on that.
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Postby junesquad on Sun Nov 04, 2007 1:59 am

I love the original Star Wars movies.
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Postby Vynson on Sun Nov 04, 2007 5:21 am

Nick Counter of AMPTP wrote:The writer is one of our most highly regarded assets...


I think this point of view may be part of the problem. Counter seems to view writers as property. But even a cursory review of the history of the Hollywood screenwriter reveals immediately that while they are regarded as chattel, they are not "highly regarded."
Nick Counter of AMPTP wrote:...and one of our most highly rewarded

In comparison to what? The caterer? Compared to the other primary creative talents involved, the writer is not especially highly rewarded.

The movie and television industry has long maltreated writers while producers and directors act like story ideas pour forth from their arses and they merely permit writers to polish their turds. And writers who do that sort of thing only have themselves to blame for this.

But spec writers bring a vision into the world that directors and producers should attempt to honor as they do in stage. But Hollywood is so backwards that they actually think the writer should honor the director's vision of a spec script that existed before the director read it.

Which brings us to another point about the strike. It isn't enough to have a stack of polished scripts. Every time a director is attached, there has to be a rewrite based on director's notes. Then, for every star that is attached, there has to be a polish for their character, mainly dialogue, so that they are happy.

These polishes cannot be done with writers on strike. So even if a production company is sitting on a stack of great scripts, they're fairly well useless unless they are packaged with talent attached and polishes complete.

As for AMPTP's claim that they need rollbacks to insure profit, they act like we aren't talking percentages already. The DVD formula is not 4 cents to the DVD, but rather a percentage that averages 4 cents to the DVD. In a percentage system, if they aren't selling many DVDs of the movie, the writer won't be making very much.

Perhaps writers might be persuaded to take a higher percentage of net rather than a smaller percentage of gross if producers and studios didn't have a notorious reputation for specious accounting. Anyone remember Forrest Gump? Last I heard, Winston Groome was still waiting on Gump to turn a profit. If writers had not been treated so shabbily in the past, there might be more good will.

Producers and studios and networks should have more risk since they make far more profit. Asking the writer to take a hit to minimize that risk is just plain tacky and Nick Counter knows it.
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Postby RogueScribner on Sun Nov 04, 2007 8:27 am

junesquad wrote:Smallville is still a toss up for an eighth season... I'm just hoping this doesn't make this season end early, suck and/or be the last.


Smallville should have ended 2 - 3 seasons ago.


P.S. Good post, Vynson.
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Postby instant_karma on Sun Nov 04, 2007 9:55 am

Seconded on just about everything Vynson wrote above.

Vynson wrote:Perhaps writers might be persuaded to take a higher percentage of net rather than a smaller percentage of gross if producers and studios didn't have a notorious reputation for specious accounting. Anyone remember Forrest Gump? Last I heard, Winston Groome was still waiting on Gump to turn a profit. If writers had not been treated so shabbily in the past, there might be more good will.


I figured the producers would just give in to the writers for this very reason. After all, they can just agree to the revised percentage and then just lie about the number of units sold like they usually do. Maybe that's the apsect of 'new media' that really makes them nervous. Greater ability for third parties to track the volume of units distributed via download or whatnot.
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Postby vicious_bastard on Sun Nov 04, 2007 10:37 am

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Postby Theta on Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:06 pm

MasterWhedon wrote:I don't think it's so easy to distill the studio position down to them being "greedy fucks."


Yes it is. The writers want a dime per, Whedon. A dime out of $10.66. That's not going to "cut into their profits" in any REMOTELY meaningful way. They're just afraid to establish any precedent.

The main problem with Hollywood can be illustrated by a conversation I overheard. I was working an event the last two days. As you might know, event, theater and film crews all kind of overlap. A bunch of guys, including the owner of the company running the event, were talking and one of them shared a story about how he got paid $500 to not move his van for two hours. He was joking when he named the price, but they just paid it: no haggling, no "Really?", just forked over the money (it should be noted this guy owns a huge and successful multimedia company.) He then said Hollywood was "stupid money" and the entire group agreed with him.

That's really the main problem: Hollywood just has too much damn money in the first place and spends it in stupid ways. I'm not talking about salaries either, I'm talking about star demands, per diem, all the ridiculous ways money leaves a film set. Honestly, if the studios banded together not on star salaries but on star demands and collectively told the actors to get fucked, it'd make up the margin on what the writer gets paid with plenty leftover for hookers.
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Postby Conroy420 on Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:29 pm

It hasn't occured to me until right now but with the writers going on strike that effects TV far more than movies right?

There wont be any new SNL, Daily Show, Late Night, Late Show, Tonight Show ect. or any show they works on a daily episode topical model.

Also, one would assume that many TV shows have yet to finish production on their whole seasons right? So is this going to affect the seasons as a whole?

Any insight?

*Forgive me if this has already been covered/discussed.
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Hollywood on Strike! (Now w/ Striking on Monday!!)

Postby bastard_robo on Sun Nov 04, 2007 3:12 pm

Looking at it, This stirke is not only supporting the Good writers, but also the guys that write all the CRAP that we get from films too

A lot of you were quick to point fingers at Bret Ratner for fucking up X-men 3, when in fact it suffered from a really shitty script.

Same for a lot of films that have promising futures only to have a really shitty script handed in.

(ex from what has been reviewd for Voltron, He man and Street Fighter, sounds like the writer compleatly took a shit on the properties)

Let also look at how many times a script is gone over by diffrent writters at the last minute and it creates a jumbled mess.


While Whedon sides with the Writers, I do agree with him that both sides are acting like pansies on this issue.
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Re: Hollywood on Strike! (Now w/ Striking on Monday!!)

Postby Vynson on Sun Nov 04, 2007 3:57 pm

bastard_robo wrote:Same for a lot of films that have promising futures only to have a really shitty script handed in.


There is no such thing as a film with a promising future until a good script is handed in. That's the point.

Are there bad writers? Yes. Thanks to people who pay to go see bad movies. They don't deserve new terms or old under the WGA MBA. But every industry has its incompetents.
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Re: Hollywood on Strike! (Now w/ Striking on Monday!!)

Postby bastard_robo on Sun Nov 04, 2007 4:20 pm

Vynson wrote:
bastard_robo wrote:Same for a lot of films that have promising futures only to have a really shitty script handed in.


There is no such thing as a film with a promising future until a good script is handed in. That's the point.

Are there bad writers? Yes. Thanks to people who pay to go see bad movies. They don't deserve new terms or old under the WGA MBA. But every industry has its incompetents.


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Postby MacCready on Sun Nov 04, 2007 4:40 pm

I hope this foolishness doesnt drag out too long.
Like, say, when BSG fires up again.
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Postby junesquad on Sun Nov 04, 2007 5:40 pm

Yeah it would be nice if it just went away and this had all been unnecessary. However, that probably will not happen.
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Postby Leckomaniac on Mon Nov 05, 2007 4:13 am

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Postby Fried Gold on Mon Nov 05, 2007 10:23 am

The panic buying has already started...people are rushing out and swiping every DVD they can get their hands on.

The local cinemas have put a "two films per customer" rule in place.

Will this crazy nightmare never end?!?!?
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Postby Zarles on Mon Nov 05, 2007 11:47 am

Fried Gold wrote:The panic buying has already started...people are rushing out and swiping every DVD they can get their hands on.

The local cinemas have put a "two films per customer" rule in place.

Will this crazy nightmare never end?!?!?


Dogs and cats living together, MASS HYSTERIA!
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Postby DinoDeLaurentiis on Mon Nov 05, 2007 11:48 am

Holy crappa... does a this a mean a the Dino, he canna make a with a the funny inna here?

I gotta to go anna see iffa my WGA card, she's a still alla valid anna such...
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Re: Hollywood on Strike! (Now w/ Striking on Monday!!)

Postby minstrel on Mon Nov 05, 2007 11:55 am

bastard_robo wrote:
A lot of you were quick to point fingers at Bret Ratner for fucking up X-men 3, when in fact it suffered from a really shitty script.


So maybe the script was shitty. Who's responsible for making the film using that script? Why didn't Ratner and the producers toss the script out and get a better one?

There are lots of lousy writers out there cranking out lousy scripts. Why are these scripts being turned into movies?

Because of guys like Ratner, who can't seem to tell the difference between a good script and a bad one.
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Postby Leckomaniac on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:00 pm

And just because the script is bad doesnt mean the guy shouldnt get paid properly. He was hired for a service, the producers/directors/actors/studio etc deemed his service to be adequate and they proceeded. Just because some random guy on a message board says it sucks doesnt mean he shouldnt get paid. Quality of the work should never be an issue. They were asked to deliver a product and they delivered it.

End of story.
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Postby Fried Gold on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:10 pm

Zarles wrote:
Fried Gold wrote:The panic buying has already started...people are rushing out and swiping every DVD they can get their hands on.

The local cinemas have put a "two films per customer" rule in place.

Will this crazy nightmare never end?!?!?


Dogs and cats living together, MASS HYSTERIA!

An old lady was trampled to death as people mobbed to get the last copy of Speed 2 for £3.99.....

..and there aren't even any writers who want the royalties from it!!?!?!? STRIKE MADNESS!!!
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Postby DinoDeLaurentiis on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:10 pm

Leckomaniac wrote:Quality of the work should never be an issue. They were asked to deliver a product and they delivered it.


Much a like a the Singer anna "Superman, He Returns", no?
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Postby Pacino86845 on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:11 pm

A producer was killed in a drive-by shooting while waiting in a queue to buy unproduced screenplays...
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Postby DinoDeLaurentiis on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:13 pm

Pacino86845 wrote:A producer was killed in a drive-by shooting while waiting in a queue to buy unproduced screenplays...


:shock:

Holy crappa... I'm a gonna to lay low inna the villa until alla this, she blows over, eh?
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Postby Pacino86845 on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:15 pm

Nice try old man, but we all know that you're the one who did the shooting... a bottle of grappa fell out of the suspect's vehicle at the time of the shooting.
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Postby Zarles on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:17 pm

Fried Gold wrote:
Zarles wrote:
Fried Gold wrote:The panic buying has already started...people are rushing out and swiping every DVD they can get their hands on.

The local cinemas have put a "two films per customer" rule in place.

Will this crazy nightmare never end?!?!?


Dogs and cats living together, MASS HYSTERIA!

An old lady was trampled to death as people mobbed to get the last copy of Speed 2 for £3.99.....

..and there aren't even any writers who want the royalties from it!!?!?!? STRIKE MADNESS!!!


This just in...

People everywhere are discovering that there's this place called 'Outside' that they can enjoy with their loved ones, virtually royalty-free. Upon arrival at 'Outside', they can enjoy such concessions as 'Sunshine', 'Fresh Air', and 'Exercise'. Once everyone stops trying to find the remote to change what they see all around them in 'Outside', all is predicted to be well. Stay tuned.
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Postby Pacino86845 on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:20 pm

'Outside' is the best way to get to the movie theatre.
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Postby Zarles on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:21 pm

Pacino86845 wrote:'Outside' is the best way to get to the movie theatre.


SSSSSHHHHHH!!!! You'll start a riot!
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Postby Fried Gold on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:23 pm

Zarles wrote:
Fried Gold wrote:
Zarles wrote:
Fried Gold wrote:The panic buying has already started...people are rushing out and swiping every DVD they can get their hands on.

The local cinemas have put a "two films per customer" rule in place.

Will this crazy nightmare never end?!?!?


Dogs and cats living together, MASS HYSTERIA!

An old lady was trampled to death as people mobbed to get the last copy of Speed 2 for £3.99.....

..and there aren't even any writers who want the royalties from it!!?!?!? STRIKE MADNESS!!!


This just in...

People everywhere are discovering that there's this place called 'Outside' that they can enjoy with their loved ones, virtually royalty-free. Upon arrival at 'Outside', they can enjoy such concessions as 'Sunshine', 'Fresh Air', and 'Exercise'. Once everyone stops trying to find the remote to change what they see all around them in 'Outside', all is predicted to be well. Stay tuned.

What's the picture quality like on "Fresh Air"?
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Postby RogueScribner on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:40 pm

Fried Gold wrote:
Zarles wrote:This just in...

People everywhere are discovering that there's this place called 'Outside' that they can enjoy with their loved ones, virtually royalty-free. Upon arrival at 'Outside', they can enjoy such concessions as 'Sunshine', 'Fresh Air', and 'Exercise'. Once everyone stops trying to find the remote to change what they see all around them in 'Outside', all is predicted to be well. Stay tuned.

What's the picture quality like on "Fresh Air"?



Surprisingly hazy.
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Postby Zarles on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:42 pm

RogueScribner wrote:
Fried Gold wrote:
Zarles wrote:This just in...

People everywhere are discovering that there's this place called 'Outside' that they can enjoy with their loved ones, virtually royalty-free. Upon arrival at 'Outside', they can enjoy such concessions as 'Sunshine', 'Fresh Air', and 'Exercise'. Once everyone stops trying to find the remote to change what they see all around them in 'Outside', all is predicted to be well. Stay tuned.

What's the picture quality like on "Fresh Air"?



Surprisingly hazy.


The reception improves outside L.A., though.
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Postby havocSchultz on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:42 pm

DinoDeLaurentiis wrote:
Pacino86845 wrote:A producer was killed in a drive-by shooting while waiting in a queue to buy unproduced screenplays...


:shock:

Holy crappa... I'm a gonna to lay low inna the villa until alla this, she blows over, eh?


Pacino86845 wrote:Nice try old man, but we all know that you're the one who did the shooting... a bottle of grappa fell out of the suspect's vehicle at the time of the shooting.


Must've been the writer from Dino's Kong Remake...
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Postby Vegeta on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:44 pm

RogueScribner wrote:
Fried Gold wrote:
Zarles wrote:This just in...

People everywhere are discovering that there's this place called 'Outside' that they can enjoy with their loved ones, virtually royalty-free. Upon arrival at 'Outside', they can enjoy such concessions as 'Sunshine', 'Fresh Air', and 'Exercise'. Once everyone stops trying to find the remote to change what they see all around them in 'Outside', all is predicted to be well. Stay tuned.

What's the picture quality like on "Fresh Air"?



Surprisingly hazy.


You must live in L.A. :-P
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Postby Leckomaniac on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:46 pm

DinoDeLaurentiis wrote:
Leckomaniac wrote:Quality of the work should never be an issue. They were asked to deliver a product and they delivered it.


Much a like a the Singer anna "Superman, He Returns", no?


The Dino, he just likes the rattle the cage, eh?

Well Hannibal sucked. Take that!
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Postby judderman on Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:52 pm

Has anyone mentioned Farenheit 451 yet? I mean a future where no one reads anything and everyone watches reality TV. I mean now that the strike is in place do you think Hollywood will finally realise that it doesn't need writers after all?
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Postby Fawst on Mon Nov 05, 2007 1:02 pm

Zarles wrote:This just in...

People everywhere are discovering that there's this place called 'Outside' that they can enjoy with their loved ones, virtually royalty-free. Upon arrival at 'Outside', they can enjoy such concessions as 'Sunshine', 'Fresh Air', and 'Exercise'. Once everyone stops trying to find the remote to change what they see all around them in 'Outside', all is predicted to be well. Stay tuned.


Ok, I have two ways to react to this:

1) This mythical 'outside' of which you speak... can you prove it truly exists?

and

2) That is about as groan-inducing as the stupid fucking commercial trying to get kids off the couch talking about how Virtual Reality is overrated and Reality is even cooler. If I cared about reality, I wouldn't partake of mind altering drugs. :)
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Postby Zarles on Mon Nov 05, 2007 1:18 pm

1) Yes, I can, but I'm not telling you. Ironically enough, Outside is much more enjoyable when there are fewer people in it.

2) Then rock on, Ethan Hawke.
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Postby Fawst on Mon Nov 05, 2007 1:26 pm

Zarles wrote:Outside is much more enjoyable when there are fewer people in it.


QFFT! lol
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Postby DinoDeLaurentiis on Mon Nov 05, 2007 1:39 pm

Leckomaniac wrote:The Dino, he just likes the rattle the cage, eh?

Well Hannibal sucked. Take that!


Yes, yes... anna see? You can a say it anna it donna bother a the Dino. It's a this acceptance of a the reality that is a the difference a between you anna me, eh?

Hehehehe...
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Hollywood on Strike! (Now w/ 100% More Strike!!!!)

Postby bastard_robo on Mon Nov 05, 2007 9:03 pm

DinoDeLaurentiis wrote:
Leckomaniac wrote:Quality of the work should never be an issue. They were asked to deliver a product and they delivered it.


Much a like a the Singer anna "Superman, He Returns", no?





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Postby Leckomaniac on Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:08 am

Herc has done an excellent job getting word of the status of many of our fav. shows.

The Office shuts down! JJ Abrams pickets! CHAOS!!!

Pencils Down!!!




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Postby RogueScribner on Tue Nov 06, 2007 10:29 am

Fawst wrote:
Zarles wrote:Outside is much more enjoyable when there are fewer people in it.


QFFT! lol



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Postby Fawst on Tue Nov 06, 2007 10:36 am

Leckomaniac wrote:Herc has done an excellent job getting word of the status of many of our fav. shows.

The Office shuts down! JJ Abrams pickets! CHAOS!!!


My first reaction to reading those updates was that Herc should probably change that topic title, or make a brand new one, but... "The Office Is Closed" sums it up nicely.

So here's a question, now that we're in the middle of the WGA strike, what happens when the others go on strike? I mean, is there a chance that the WGA situation could be resolved early, only for the DGA to go on strike not long after?
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Postby junesquad on Tue Nov 06, 2007 10:36 am

The madness begins...
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Postby Leckomaniac on Tue Nov 06, 2007 11:08 am

Fawst wrote:
Leckomaniac wrote:Herc has done an excellent job getting word of the status of many of our fav. shows.

The Office shuts down! JJ Abrams pickets! CHAOS!!!


My first reaction to reading those updates was that Herc should probably change that topic title, or make a brand new one, but... "The Office Is Closed" sums it up nicely.

So here's a question, now that we're in the middle of the WGA strike, what happens when the others go on strike? I mean, is there a chance that the WGA situation could be resolved early, only for the DGA to go on strike not long after?


That is entirely possible. However, if the WGA situation is settled before that time...it will set a precedent that should make the negotiations easier for the other Guilds...and in all honesty the financial situation for the other Guilds isnt nearly as black and white as the writers situation. Anyone with a brain can look at the current situation and come to the conclusion that the writers are not being fairly compensated...the case is a bit harder to make for directors and actors who have a few high profile individuals that make an insane amount upfront. Of course, there are still some that are underpaid/appreciated...but you never hear of a writer getting 10 million up front. It just doesnt happen.
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Postby RogueScribner on Tue Nov 06, 2007 2:20 pm

[quote="Joss Whedon"]
FROM THE FRONT LINES!

Sick as a dog but proud as a noble and much healthier dog, I made my way to the picket lines outside of Fox studios today. I’m really glad I did. In addition to carrying the banner, it was a chance to talk with other writers, get more perspectives and more information about what’s happening, and to see a surprising number of old friends. David Fury and Mere Smith were there, as well as many non-mutant enemies that I know. We were all caught in that giddy first burst of solidarity and fear. Nobody thinks this is going to be easy. But everybody there knows that, as things stand, it has to be.

A particularly gratifying and unexpected sight was that of Aly and Alexis, along with Cobie Smulders, marching shoulder to shoulder with the HIMYM scribes. Aly and Alexis even brought boxes of candy bars to hand out to the flagging marchers (actually, I was the only one who appeared to be flagging – even the pregnant writer outlasted me). Mere told me young Boreanaz had also been there earlier that day. I was really touched, but my actor-friends were very matter-of-fact about the whole thing. They understand that the issues at hand affect the future of the entire creative community here, and that the writers, by virtue of being first, will set a precedent that affects all the guilds. That is why we writers have to be firm, intractable and absolute in our dedication to getting a fair deal. And that’s all we’re talking about: a fair deal. For us, and for generations of artists to come.

Sounds pretty damn pompous, no? “Generations to come…â€
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Postby Bayouwolf on Tue Nov 06, 2007 2:45 pm

Leckomaniac wrote:
That is entirely possible. However, if the WGA situation is settled before that time...it will set a precedent that should make the negotiations easier for the other Guilds...and in all honesty the financial situation for the other Guilds isnt nearly as black and white as the writers situation. Anyone with a brain can look at the current situation and come to the conclusion that the writers are not being fairly compensated...the case is a bit harder to make for directors and actors who have a few high profile individuals that make an insane amount upfront. Of course, there are still some that are underpaid/appreciated...but you never hear of a writer getting 10 million up front. It just doesnt happen.


True to a point. But the bottom line is that unless these guilds/unions build a clause into their contracts that prohibits studios and distributors from using the newest technology without renegotiating prior to the release of said new technology, the WGA will still be getting the ol' shaft-a-roo every 15 or so years.
Its a simple fix. Getting retribution for the last 10+ years... Not so much.
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Postby RogueScribner on Tue Nov 06, 2007 3:02 pm

The studios would never allow that clause. What if they tried a new media venture and lost money on it? And then, on top of that, that have to pay residuals out to all above the line talent? The studios would never seek out new (and potentially better) avenues of distribution. It'll never happen. It's one thing to fight for your fair share of a proven commodity, it's quite another to fight for your fair share of a what-if.
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