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Entertainment

“Many questions remain open”


Progress has been made in recent days toward ending the SAG-AFTRA strike, but “a lot” of issues remain on the table, the union’s chief negotiator said Monday morning.

Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, chief negotiator and executive director of the guild, made an appearance at the Disney picket lines. In an interview outside the studio gates, he didn’t hazard a guess as to when the strike would end.

“I think it depends on the mindset that everyone brings to the table this week,” he said. “I certainly hope we can move things forward quickly, but there are still important questions that remain open and until they are resolved there will be no agreement.”

The union communicated with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers on Saturday and Sunday. The two sides are expected to discuss later Monday how to continue negotiations this week.

“There has been progress, and that is the source of my cautious optimism,” Crabtree-Ireland said.

Among the questions that remain to be resolved is artificial intelligence. SAG-AFTRA wants to impose limits on the use of AI to recreate artists’ images, including consent and a minimum remuneration floor for such use.

The union also said it was seeking to limit AI consent to a single project, but that studios continued to seek consent that would cover multiple projects within the same franchise.

“There are a number of important issues in the AI ​​space that we are currently working on,” Crabtree-Ireland said, citing the issue of franchise consent as one on which there has been no discussion. of progress.

But he stressed that AI is not the only thing standing in the way of a deal.

“Many questions still remain unanswered,” he said. “It’s not just AI that remains on the table. There are other important issues that we are still working on.

Crabtree-Ireland declined to go into detail on these points, including the union’s demand for a share of the streaming platform’s revenue. Earlier in October, studios proposed a model modeled after the Writers Guild of America deal, which provides a residual bonus for the most-watched made-for-streaming shows.

But SAG-AFTRA pushed for something broader, which would address the stakeholders of each project on one platform.

“From the beginning, we never called it an achievement bonus, because it wasn’t just about recognizing a specific achievement,” Crabtree-Ireland said. “It was about sharing the revenue generated by the streaming world. I think whatever version we end up with will be a significant step in that direction.

The strike lasted 109 days and Crabtree-Ireland said he was aware of the pressure to end it, particularly given the difficulties felt by artists and workers at the bottom.

“I really feel that pressure — that’s why I feel such a sense of urgency to get things done,” he said. “That’s why we’ve been working all weekend, and we’re not wasting any time trying to move this process forward.”

But he said he also heard members stressing that structural changes are needed to move the industry in the right direction.

“We’re really striving to meet the needs of our members right now,” he said. “We will eventually reach an agreement, and hopefully sooner rather than later.”

Gn entert

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