Thursday, November 08, 2007

Do you hear the sound of crickets? Day three of the writers strike.

Seven shows have stopped production already, including DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES. Without scripts they have nothing to shoot. All the late night shows started showing reruns on Monday. The two sides as of today are not speaking. Folks, we might be in for a long ass strike. I'm not going to get into the whole blow by blow but this is getting ugly. I am hearing from other execs that the studios are already letting assistants and junior executives go, and suspending talent deals. In eight weeks they can legally fire/terminate whoever they want and not have to pay out people contracts.

Many actors have joined the picket lines. They know when their contract is up they will be dealing with the same issues. The studio's rep is trying to paint the writers as greedy saying the avg. writer makes 200k a year. However, for every Paul Haggis who makes 2-4 million for the Bond sequel there are hundreds of writers who barely make guild minium every year. Here are some of the salaries of the studio heads. Disney's Bob Iger: $42.4 Million in ‘06. Fox's Chernin: $42.5 million in ‘06 and CBS's Moonves: $28 million in ‘06. Yes, this is with stock options and bonuses but these are people who are saying paying writers four more cents for DVD residuals is too much.

The office is so quiet. We left work early yesterday. I spoke to one senior agent who told me her phone rang only once. Yikes. I'm sitting here eating some chips and drinking Coke. I know I shouldn't but I eat when I'm nervous, cranky, stressed, romantically challenged, tired, worried, and bored so I have been eating non-stop since I returned from Toronto. The hold on my gym membership is finally up next week, that will help. I don't want a water taxi or gondola in Venice to tip over because I stepped into it. That would be bad.


Giulia said...

Oh no, NOT Desperate Housewives! This IS bad!
I hear ya on the whole "eat when I am nervous" thing. I do it all the time. UGH, why can't I be one of those women who loses their appetite when they are nervous?!

gibber said...


Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Work on your NEXT novel while it's quiet at work. ;-)

Texas Espresso said...

You know whats interesting is that people are really talking about it. I mean those of us who have absolutely no connection (or knowledge for that of the tv/movie/entertainment business.

We were talking about it at lunch today. lol its bad but I hope they get what they deserve. Thanks for keeping us in the loop!

J.Doe said...

This is a little bit off topic but I saw a cartoon with people protesting and they had blank signs. The caption underneath the cartoon said 'writer's strike'. It cracked me up.
But seriously, the writers do deserve a bit more than they earn. Let those actors who support them take lower salaries to balance it out.

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

giulia - yes it's true.

gibber - sorry. I know how much you love the show.

jen - I will as soon as I send the current one off.

texas - the strike will have a ripple effect past Hollywood. I wonder if the avg. viewer will just turn off their TVs instead of watching rerun or back to back reality programs.

j.doe - actually that is pretty funny. I do hope they at least start talking next week.

Liz said...

I hope good things for writers come out of this strike. It's amazing to see how greedy studio big-wigs are. They get paid ridiculous amounts of money. Writers deserve more than trickle down economics.

chris & erin said...

it is strange how the strike is already affecting the average viewer - it is making a big statement I guess

sognatrice said...

Hopefully there will be talking; I saw a brief mention of Clinton offering to mediate? Didn't catch much of the story though.

What do you think of Ellen's reaction?

Also, I laughed out loud at your last sentence, but I'm laughing *with* you!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

Liz - exactly...we saw how trickle down economics didn't work in the past.

chris & erin - If this strike lasts past Jan 1 viewers are really going to be screwed.

sognatrice - I heard that "Arnuld" and Clinton are trying to help...not sure if it's true.

I didn't see or hear Ellen's reaction.

I know you were laughing with me. :O

gibber said...

Ellen decided to continue taping her show, but with no monologue. she said she had guests who made plans, a crew to think about, and while she stood with the strikers, she was going to go on with her show.

being the only talk show that is still running current shows (I think), it looks hella bad.