AFTRA & SAG: So much for Solidarity

by | General

Imagine my (no) surprise when I read today’s news in the LA Times about the 11th hour move by AFTRA to sever joint negotiations with SAG for the upcoming film and television contracts.

Funny. Now SAG is crying “Wolf”. Last year, SAG’s National Board initiated the gauntlet toss game when it voted to dissolve Phase One.  Now AFTRA is calling it quits.

I discussed my consternation and concerns over the separate paths our actors unions were taking last August in this blog entry.

After numerous failed attempts to merge the two unions over the years, the last one created the great schism, which has become an all-out WAR. Even John Sweeney, head of the AFL-CIO failed to mediate these siblings, my brothers and sisters.

Strange bedfellows: Several members sit on both National Boards, and about 44,000 are members of both unions.

The AMPTP must be jumping for joy this morning. This news falls neatly into the studio’s hands, and they are ready to start talks as early as this week. Divide and conquer. Unfortunately, the actors unions did most of their work for them.

There was also some good advice in this morning’s paper found in Syndicated columnist John Rosemond’s  reply to a mother who didn’t know how to handle her bickering, fighting children. He told her to not get involved, as it invites the perceived villan and victim to further clash, making problems worse.

Instead, Rosemond suggests sitting each of them down in separate rooms for one-half hour, during which time they would do well to contemplate how they can help bring about world peace.

1 Comment

  1. Yup.
    Here we go. There’s no way actors can play hardball like the writers did, as this move will completely neuter SAG. There will be no unified front.

    I was happy to see SAG lay off the pressure for bloc voting and representative table seating (as opposed to the 50/50 split), but I’m shocked (not really) that AFTRA would pull this.

    IMHO it can only mean that AFTRA will do everything it can to undercut it’s rival guild, and get more AFTRA contracts into producer’s hands.

    It’s technically a good move for the guild, but I think it comes at the expense of all the AFTRA and dual card actors.

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