Don’t Cross the Picket Line: Update on WGA and SAG-AFTRA Strikes

“Watch the official trailer for our new film. Thanksgiving Day“Coming to theaters soon,” says star and Tik Tok influencer Addison Rae as she unveils a new teaser trailer for Eli Roth’s highly anticipated horror film.

Overlaid at the bottom of the screen are the words “Recorded before July 14, 2023.”

The Writers Guild of America (WGA), which represents 11,500 screenwriters, has been on strike since May 2, 2023, over a dispute over wages and creative issues.

The strike rules stated that all WGA members “immediately cease writing for all striking companies.”

This led to one of the most disgraceful results of the strike: the premature end Saturday Night LifeSeason 48. The final episode of the season aired on April 15, 2023, with previous seasons running from mid to late May.

On July 14, 2023, the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) joined the WGA in striking.

Celebrities who looked flamboyant include Jason Sudeikis, Paul Dano, Rosario Dawson and Susan Sarandon.

SAG-AFTRA joined the strike, so the overlay was included before Thanksgiving Day trailer, as well as many other interviews with actors, directors and writers.

Interviews conducted by Letterboxd with celebrities such as Greta Gerwig, the director of Barbie, and Cillian Murphy, the lead actor of Oppenheimer, also stated that the interviews were conducted before the start of their respective strikes.

However, the Addison Rae clip wasn’t even an interview.

According to the latest updated SAG-AFTRA strike guidelines, advertising/promotional services for television/theatrical contract work, such as tours, personal appearances and interviews, must occur until the end of the strike.

Social media is also included in the hold list, so you won’t find recent posts about Thanksgiving Day on Addison Rae’s Instagram.

The last post about the film on her personal account was published on February 23, 2023. The same goes for Bottoms star Rachel Sennott, whose last post about feminist comedy was just four days before the SAG-AFTRA strike began.

Studios can still promote their upcoming films, which is why the trailer that Addison Rae introduces is available despite cast and crew restrictions.

Likewise, the @bottomsmovie account’s last post about the film was made 18 hours before this article was written.

There has also been a significant increase in the number of Bottom trailers before YouTube videos, apparently more than previous films. Studios appear to be desperate to move forward with their upcoming projects, which is understandable given the detrimental effects of the strike.

During the four months of the WGA strike, Walt Disney Studios lost more than $500 million.

In addition, anticipated series have been halted, such as Max’s Batman spinoff Penguin and the fifth season of Netflix’s Stranger Things, reducing revenue for major TV studios.

Perhaps one of the most disappointing consequences is the shutdown of Mission: Impossible: Dead Reckoning Part 2.

“Dead Reckoning, Part 1” hit theaters just two days before the SAG-AFTRA strike and was a huge success. The film ended on a cliffhanger which made fans unable to wait patiently for the second part.

The film was originally scheduled to release on June 28, 2024, but was delayed due to a pause in production.

These harsh results of the strike proved too much for some celebrities to bear. Drew Barrymore decided to continue her talk show without writers in a statement on Instagram posted on September 9. 10, 2023.

This caused a stir among both Barrymore fans and those who support the strikes, since her writers are protected by the WGA.

While Barrymore herself isn’t technically breaking the strike because she’s under a different contract, fans feel it’s unreasonable and unfair to the strikers to continue her show without writers.

There is currently no clear end point to the strikes because the studios are not meeting the strikers’ demands. It’s been four months for the WGA and two for SAG-AFTRA, and there’s no end in sight.

  • Charlie Rinehart

    Charlie is a first-year creative writing student. In his spare time, he enjoys drinking iced coffee and watching sequels to scary horror movies.

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