08 December, 2007

Strike talks halted

Variety:

"Talks between striking writers and the majors have collapsed, five weeks after scribes walked off the job - with no indication of when negotiations will resume.

Friday night's cratering of negotiations followed two weeks of bitter and mostly unproductive negotiations with no indication of when -- or whether -- they'll resume.

The AMPTP issued a statement early Friday evening announcing that talks had broken off, listing half a dozen areas in which it will not make a deal with the WGA -- new media compensation, access to revenues unrelated to producers, establishing fiar market value outside the marketplace, reality TV and animation jurisdiction and sympathy strikes.

The move came at the end of a day of dueling news releases, which saw both sides blame each other for the lack of progress at the negotiating table.

WGA negotiating committee chief John Bowman said he wasn't surprised at the AMPTP's departure from negotiations. "They had drumrolled this all week," he added. "We wound up being engaged in fake negotiations. I suspect they're trying to do this so that writers will suffer during the holiday season."

Bowman said the resumption of negotiations would probably take place through back-channel efforts.

In a statement issued early Friday evening, the AMPTP said that the negotiating strategy by the WGA is designed to keep stalling the negotiations rather than reach a deal.

"Their Quixotic pursuit of radical demands led them to begin this strike, and now has caused this breakdown in negotiations," the AMPTP asserted. "We hope that the WGA will come back to this table with a rational plan that can lead us to a fair and equitable resolution to a strike that is causing so much distress for so many people in our industry and community." "

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WGA's Response to AMPTP Breaking Off Talks


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