Dispatches From The Picket Lines: Writers Come Out In Numbers In LA As Strike’s End Seems To Be In Sight
This is Day 144 of the WGA strike and Day 71 of the SAG-AFTRA strike.
There was a giddy feeling on the picket lines in LA today after huge numbers of writers turned out in what could be one of the last days of WGA picketing.
As Bob Iger, Donna Langley, Ted Sarandos and David Zaslav and co. enter their third consecutive day of negotiations with the WGA leadership in Sherman Oaks, hundreds of writers came out in a massive show of solidarity.
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After last night’s marathon sessions, there was real optimism in the air, countered by some realism, that a deal could be reached today.
In fact, one of the reasons the picket lines, which were extended from their traditional end of 12pm to 2pm, were so busy were the rumors that started last night. A deal was going to happen at 6pm. This morning, notes were being frantically exchanged promising a 2pm announcement. Obviously, neither of these things happened, but in spite of that, the writers were in a positive mood.
In a note to members last night, the WGA encouraged writers to come out in force today. “Your Negotiating Committee appreciates all the messages of solidarity and support we have received the last few days, and ask as many of you as possible to come out to the picket lines tomorrow,” it noted.
Zoe Marshall, a writer on NBC’s upcoming drama series Found, who was re-elected to the WGA West’s board of directors, thanked the crowd for their support and said that her DMs, Signal Chat and Whatsapp had been blowing up over the last 24 hours.
“A lot of people have been spreading the same bullshit, there’s a deal but it’s not that good and no one is talking to us. Let me tell you right now, [if] the AMPTP and their Dollar Store PR firm thinks they can trick our guild into believing any of their bullshit and taking a deal that is even a molecule less than what we deserve, they have the wrong fucking union. We sent out the batsignal and you came out in incredible numbers today so they can point out the window of that dilapidated Galleria in Sherman Oaks but we can do this shit all day, 365… because your poorly crafted lies do not stand up to the incredible force and solidarity of one of the most powerful unions this country has ever seen,” she said at 2pm. “Do no harm, but take no fucking shit.”
“The Writers Guild of America exists for one purpose, and that is to protect, empower, and prop up the longevity of writers. That’s it. We have no other agenda,” she added. “The guild is a bunch of boss-ass bitches out here, putting in the work and not hiding in an office building that is probably overly air-conditioned. Stand strong, thank you for your solidarity and let’s get a deal.”
“One thing I’ve learned in life is if you aren’t careful, sometimes you don’t get to say thank you and sometimes you don’t get to say goodbye. Now, I don’t know anything you don’t know, and for all we know negotiations could fall apart and I could be out here again with you guys in a week. But today I want to cover my bases and say thank you,” added Warrior Nun writer Brenden Gallagher.
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