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Were you planning on watching Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part Two next year? What about It Ends With Us? If you were, you’ll probably have to wait an extra year.

A strike between the Screen Actors Guild and your everyday streaming services has slowed down the production of many of the movies and TV shows that everybody’s been so excited to watch.

SAG stands for the Screen Actors Guild and AFTRA stands for the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists. SAG-AFTRA is a union that was formed in 2012 with the merging of SAG and AFTRA. AMPTP stands for the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers and represents many of the streaming companies SAG-AFTRA is striking against.

The SAG-AFTRA strike against the AMPTP began formally on July 14th, 2023. The “Strike notice and order” that SAG-AFTRA created was sent to all members of the organization before the strike officially began. This notice describes a strike effective on July 14th that strikes “all covered services under the producer SAG-AFTRA Codified Basic Agreement” as well as “SAG-AFTRA Television Agreements and their related agreements.” It also directs all members to “cease rendering all services and performing all work covered by the TV/ Theatrical Contracts.” According to the New York Times, this strike came as a result of a “contract dispute” between SAG-AFTRA and AMPTP.

The New York Times reports that the goal of the strike was to have members receive better pay, “increased residual payments (a type of royalty) from streaming services,” and protection against AI that could come at their disadvantage.

SAG-AFTRA now includes over 150,000 actors and other people in the industry (NYTimes). Some notable members of this union are Pedro Pascal, Lizzy Caplan, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, and Amy Schumer. The household-name streaming companies represented and negotiated for by AMPTP include Netflix, Disney, Warner Brothers, and NBCUniversal.

The president of AMPTP is Carol Lombardini who has been a part of a lot of the negotiations between the two organizations. The president of SAG-AFTRA is Fran Drescher who was also publicly active in the strike.

According to the New York Times, the Writers Guild of America, WGA, went on strike in May of 2023. As a result, Hollywood was “already 80 percent shut down” in early July, before SAG even went on strike. This strike lasted 148 days and ended on September 27th, 2023 as a result of an agreement formed for a new contract between SAG-AFTRA and AMPTP.

Productions like late-night TV shows, Yellowjackets, Severance, and Stranger Things were all delayed as a result of the WGA strike before SAG even entered the conversation. When SAG went on strike, it was the first time since 1960 that both the writers and actors guilds were on strike simultaneously, and Hollywood felt the repercussions. This combination ended up costing services between $6-$10 billion nationwide according to the New York Times.

Actors that are members of SAG-AFTRA were prevented from working for any productions with any relation to AMPTP productions. They were also blocked from participating in any promotional events related to AMPTP productions. Even dressing up as characters from productions related to AMPTP for Halloween was barred for SAG-AFTRA union members.

Because of the large number of SAG-AFTRA members, this made it very difficult for Hollywood to actually continue running. Movies like Deadpool 3, Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning, It Ends With Us, and Gladiator 2 were all barred from continuing filming as a result of the strike.

In late October as the strike continued, “an estimated $1.5 billion” is expected to be lost “from the global box office next year.” This is because Disney already delayed both Pixar’s Elio and the live action Snow White from a 2024 release to 2025. In addition, Mission: Impossible 8 was pushed to 2025 from Paramount’s expected 2024 release. Dune: Part Two, another highly anticipated film that was supposed to be released in November of 2023 was also delayed to a theater release in March of 2024 as a result of this strike .

The strike is considered one of the most extended “labor crises in Hollywood history” lasting a total of 118 days. This strike was the longest movie and television strike in history. The tentative deal that ended this strike involved a contract “valued at more than $1 billion over three years” by Fran Drescher.

This strike has been covered by many news outlets including Variety, Deadline, Los Angeles Times, The Guardian, the New York Times, and more. Before the deal, picketing and protesting had been going on all over the country outside of studio buildings in places like Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, etc.

This strike pertains to the majority of the US because the companies that SAG-AFTRA are striking against are companies that most people use daily. People all over the country will feel the effects of this strike because of how it will affect television for the foreseeable future.

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