Saturday, November 22, 2008

Will a SAG strike impact Hollywood in the Hub?

Leaders from the guild representing Hollywood's TV and film actors met today and asked for an authorization to strike after talks for a new contract failed, according to reports from the AP.

Screen Actor's Guild (SAG) and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) have been in limbo since June when they were unable to reach an amicable agreement. The hold up is reportedly over payment of new media outlets like the Internet and the delivery of clips on cellphones.

But will this impending strike impact the growing list of TV and film productions slotted for Hollywood East?

While Hollywood films currently in production are nervously eyeing the potential of a SAG strike, a handful of indie projects are in the clear. In June, the Hollywood Reporter announced that the soon-to-be-filmed Jennifer Lopez movie, "The Governess," has been awarded a no-strike pact with the union which gives the made-in-Boston production a greenlight to move forward.

Other productions, like the Spike-TV pilot "War of '04," have been cast with AFTRA (American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) members which would allow for the made-in-Boston TV series to continue if the SAG strike happens.

AFTRA, whose members also include radio announcers and actors who work in daytime television, contends that its contracts are fair and in line with today’s economic realities but critics say producers will start making deals with the smaller union given its lower-cost contract.

"Edge of Darkness" filming, slotted to wrap this week, and other big-name productions shot in Boston like "The Surrogates" starring Bruce Willis and "The Box" with Cameron Diaz finished production before the impending SAG strike so they should also be in the clear.

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