WGA strikes deal to end months-long strike with AMPTP

The long-standing strike by the Writers Guild of America (WGA) is set to conclude as the organization announced a tentative agreement with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP). The joint announcement was made via Instagram by the Writers Guild East and Writers Guild West, stating that the strike would officially end just after midnight.

The agreement, which is pending ratification, brings several notable gains for writers. A five percent minimum pay increase is slated for completion once the contract is finalized, with additional raises planned for 2024 and 2025. The deal, valid from September 25, 2023, through May 1, 2026, will also include “increased foreign streaming residuals” and a “viewership-based streaming bonus.”

Furthermore, the contract states that “most MBA minimums will increase by 5%,” referring to the Minimum Basic Agreements, which cover members’ rights and benefits. Staff writers and Article 14 writers (story editors/executive story editors) will also see an increase in their minimum weekly rates.

One noteworthy change is that each writer on a writing team employed for a script will receive pension and health contributions up to the relevant cap, with contributions for each writer on the team made on the full weekly minimum instead of half.

The strike, which spanned several months, had repercussions across the film and television industry, leading to project cancellations and delays. Late-night talk shows like The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel Live resorted to airing reruns during the hiatus.

Celebrity endorsements flooded social media as news of the tentative agreement broke. Sheryl Lee Ralph from Abbott Elementary expressed support for SAG-AFTRA’s upcoming negotiations, emphasizing the importance of an agreement that serves the needs of its members.

As the WGA strike concludes, the SAG-AFTRA strike, involving the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, remains ongoing after unsuccessful contract negotiations with the AMPTP, which represents major industry players like Netflix, Amazon, Disney, and others. Their strike began on July 13, with actors advocating for improved compensation and benefit plans.