The Amrican Writers Strike began in Novermber, by the Writers Guild who were wanting some decent payback for DVD and Internet sales of movies, TV and Music that they had a hand in creating. For too long, they asserted, studios had scooped the money for this new boon to the industry and pocketed it all. Writers were paid a salary, a once off sum, and that was it.
So, in order to get a fair deal, they went on strike. Fair enough. If you are getting ripped off, then you have a right to stand up and say something about it.
Problem for the world is, with the writers strike, most Hollywood productions have shut down. Most TV shows are off the air, as new shows are not currently being filmed. Most of 2007/2008 product should currently be in production, but its not. Which means that all your favourite shows, like CSI, Grey’s Anatomy, Desperate Housewives, and all those shows, have about half the usual number of episodes shot and completed. Which means, for the next year or so we’ll be playing catchup on stories in those shows. There is a fair bulk of Australian TV that is taken up with screening US shows, although now thats not going to be such an option. And repeats will only get you so far. I guess this means more reality shows (which are unscripted) on our tubes.
It also has the unfortunate power to halt any and all film production currently taking place in the world wherever US guild members are involved. Already completed scripts are allowed to be used, although if you want to tinker with it… too bad.
As an example, the George “Happy Feet, Mad Max” Miller directed Justice League project has been put on haitus for the immediate future, while the negotiations in the US take place.
Its a real pleasure to finally see Megan Gale in a major film role (she appeared briefly in Stealth, a few years back) in a role I can see her slipping comfortably into. For those unaware, Gale will be taking on this role:
But if Millers film gets pushed back too far, other issues might arise…. such as actors and crew having to pull out to fulfill other commitments.
The entire thing is beginning to bite hard, and it’s not just affecting the US, but everywhere else as well.
And it’s starting to suck.