The afternoon sun was relentless, but paled in comparison to the seething anger of the hundreds of protesters outside streaming giant Netflix’s headquarters on Sunset Boulevard.
Friday marked the first day of the largest walkout in Hollywood history as crowds of protesters gathered, but everyone had only one question on their lips—where are all the A-list stars?
One sign read: ‘Where’s Ben Affleck?’ Another read, ‘Your poor Montana property! I’m trying to pay the rent, not my third and fourth mortgage or the maintenance of my private jet!’
Highest earning stars in the industry Including George Clooney, Meryl Streep, Jennifer Lawrence, Margot Robbie and Matt Damon – issued statements in support of the 160,000 members of actors’ union SAG-AFTRA, which brought Hollywood to a standstill.
But the most important stars weren’t there, oh yeah Brad Pitt enjoying the final of the tournament at Wimbledon.
Cast and extras flocked to the first day of the biggest strike in Hollywood history on Friday, but everyone had one question on their lips “Where Are All the A-List Stars?”
The strikers fear AI will steal their work and are angry at streaming services’ refusal to pay royalties, which are traditionally paid by studios every time a show or movie airs.
They descended en masse outside NBC studios in New York on Friday, as well as Netflix, HBO, Amazon and Paramount. Some of them have taken their anger out on A-list stars These include actor Ben Affleck, who was not seen during the protests.
Ted Lasso stars Jason Sudeikis and Josh Gad, who voiced “Olaf the Snowman” in Disney’s Frozen films, also joined the protest.
Gad said: ‘As we stand on the brink of uncertainty about what artificial intelligence could mean for all of us in this industry and beyond, it is imperative that we ensure we deliver on the benefits of cost savings and ease of use. Essentially safe. Seismic Technology represents these venture companies.’
disney boss, Bob Iger, who recently signed a two-year deal worth £41m, has been severely criticized. A man held a placard depicting her as Marie Antoinette and reading ‘How about sharing some cake, Bob?’
Disney lost £700 million the previous year on unsuccessful productions such as The Little Mermaid.
Iger declared that the strike was “unrealistic, rude and disturbing”. Jolie Fisher said, ‘This is bullshit! These people are earning us hundreds of millions of dollars and if we want a small portion of that income in the future, it is not unfair or disruptive.’
Jenny Fumarolo, who stars in the latest Indiana Jones film, The Dial of Destiny, said: ‘I’ve been in this industry for 25 years. This is a moment of radical change for the industry. Many of my friends in the UK are unemployed.
‘For technology companies, entertainment is just a sideshow. Apple and Amazon made their fortunes from technology and now want to turn our art into pure commerce. That’s too bad. They don’t want to share profits.
Nicole Paysant, who appeared in Westworld, Criminal Minds and CSI: Vegas, said: ‘Actors’ contracts haven’t changed since the ’80s. This is not right.’
Union leader Ms Drescher accused the studios of delaying negotiations to allow large promotional tours for summer blockbuster movies including Barbie.
Meanwhile, Equity, the British actors’ union representing 47,000 performers, has warned it is keeping a “very close eye” on any attempts to move productions to the UK.