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Writers Walk The Picket Line During The WGA Strike At Netflix

Source: MediaNews Group/Los Angeles Daily News via Getty Images / Getty

Hollywood actors joined film and television writers on picket lines on Friday, the first day of a dual work stoppage that has forced U.S. studios to shutter productions as workers battle over pay in the streaming TV era.

The twin strikes, the first such joint effort in more than 60 years, will add to the economic damage from the writers’ walkout that started on May 2, delivering another blow to the multibillion-dollar industry as it struggles with changes to its business.

Both SAG-AFTRA – Hollywood’s largest union, representing 160,000 film and television actors – and the Writers Guild of America (WGA) are demanding increases in base pay and residuals, or fees paid from streaming television, plus assurances that their work will not be replaced by artificial intelligence (AI).

SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher gave an emotional speech on Thursday announcing the union’s plans to strike.

During her speech, Drescher delivered many pointed messages to the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, including, “We are labor and we stand tall and we demand respect and to be honored for our contribution” and “We are being victimized by a very greedy entity.”

“I am shocked by the way the people that we have been in business with are treating us. I cannot believe it, quite frankly: How far apart we are on so many things. How they plead poverty, that they’re losing money left and right when giving hundreds of millions of dollars to their CEOs. It is disgusting. Shame on them.”