Striking Hollywood actors, studios suspend contract negotiations

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Talks between Hollywood studios and negotiators for the SAG-AFTRA actors' union have been suspended after the union presented its most recent proposal, the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) said.

SAG-AFTRA, Hollywood's largest union representing 160,000 television and film performers, walked off the job on July 14 demanding higher base wages and residual pay from streaming TV as well as restrictions on the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in entertainment.

It presented its latest proposals on Wednesday.

"SAG-AFTRA's current offer included what it characterised as a viewership bonus that, by itself, would cost more than $800 million per year – which would create an untenable economic burden," said the AMPTP, which represents Walt Disney, Netflix and other studios.

On issues like general wage increases, high-budget subscription video on demand (SVOD) residuals, and viewership bonuses, the AMPTP offered the same terms ratified by the Directors Guild of America (DGA) and Writers Guild of America (WGA), it said, adding that the SAG-AFTRA rejected them.

SAG-AFTRA did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

This week, members of the WGA approved a new three-year contract with major studios, five months after the union called a strike. The new contract provides pay raises, some protections around the use of artificial intelligence and other gains.

AMPTP said it hoped the actors' union would reconsider and return to productive negotiations soon.

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