Is the Writers Guild Going on Strike?
Could it be the end of ‘Peak TV’? What about Jon Snow?
You know how we’re living in a golden era of “Peak TV,” and it seems like every day there’s an announcement in Variety or The Hollywood Reporter about how Talented Writer X and Visionary Showrunner Y have signed up with Netflix or Amazon to make the series-of-your-dreams and nothing could possibly interrupt this amazing stream of smart, ambitious entertainment?
Well…hold on to your Fire Stick because the writers may be striking.
THR is reporting that the Writers Guild of America has announced that if a new agreement with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers isn’t reached by the time the current deal is up on May 1st, then on May 2nd the writers are going on strike. A new round of negotiations began yesterday and will continue through the end of the week. According to a letter the WGA sent out to media buyers yesterday, the writers are seeking a total of $178 million per year from studios across the industry. It’s the first time the Guild’s demands have been laid out in public, putting a little extra pressure on the opposite side of the negotiating table. I mean, $178 million seems like a fair price if it gets us two more (albeit abbreviated) seasons of Game of Thrones, right? Or how about Master of None? What about Sharp Objects? Is anyone considering just how many Neil Gaiman adaptations are in production right now? These are the hard questions we need to be asking.
In case you need a refresher for what all this means, remember the ‘07–’08 Writers Guild strike. A standoff will result in the halt of scripted TV shows, movies, late-night shows, and also Netflix, Amazon, and web-series. Everyone’s playing it relatively nonchalant so far, but this is an earth-shattering prospect, especially considering that all of us have gotten so used to (maybe even addicted to) enjoying the incredible, massive output of content over the last eight years! We’ve been spoiled, yes, and we would like it to continue. So let’s hope that the writers get the money they deserve and none of us has to worry about going a full calendar year without Jon Snow.
Rest assure — if there is a strike, EL will be ready to (1) hit the picket lines, and (2) provide you with enough summer reading to stave off those DTs.