Hollywood writers marked the 100th day of their ongoing strike on Wednesday, labeling the occasion a “milestone of shame” for studios as the deadlock between the two sides continues. Since its commencement in early May, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) walkout has halted numerous film shoots and productions, resulting in significant financial losses for the California economy on a daily basis. Despite the extended duration of the strike, meaningful dialogue between the writers and studios remains scarce.
Last month, the situation escalated as the Writers Guild of America was joined on the picket lines by the larger Screen Actors Guild (SAG-AFTRA). The WGA conveyed their frustration, emphasizing that the studios’ failure to seriously consider the writers’ proposals has perpetuated the strike’s duration and caused substantial hardship for workers and industry participants dependent on this sector.
The primary demands of the writers and actors include improved compensation, residuals, and assurances regarding the future use of artificial intelligence in the industry. The WGA emphasized that resolving the strike would be economically advantageous compared to the damages caused by the prolonged impasse.
In a parallel coincidence, the previous WGA strike in 2007-08 concluded after exactly 100 days. The impact of that strike was estimated to cost the California economy $2.1 billion, as calculated by the Milken Institute.
While the parties recently met to discuss reopening formal talks, no tangible progress has emerged from the discussions. The writers have expressed skepticism about the studios’ willingness to negotiate in good faith, while the studios’ response to the writers’ rhetoric has been described as “unfortunate.”
Outside Netflix’s offices, screenwriter Charlie Kesslering expressed the strike’s significance, framing it as an “existential fight” to ensure that careers in the entertainment industry remain viable and sustainable. Disney CEO Bob Iger, who had been criticized by strikers, expressed his commitment to resolving the issues that have contributed to the impasse.
The WGA stressed that studios have no option but to arrive at a fair and reasonable agreement, underscoring the ongoing determination of the writers and the potential for a significant impact on the industry’s future.