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Studios say SAG has rebuffed ‘final offer’

SAG and studio representatives met face-to-face Thursday, and the actors' guild is still refusing to accept what the studios call their "final" offer.
/ Source: Reuters

Hollywood’s major studios said the Screen Actors Guild on Thursday rebuffed the industry’s “final” contract offer, a move the studios said “puts labor peace at risk.”

The statement from the studios’ bargaining agent, the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, came hours after a SAG delegation delivered its formal response to an offer the studios had presented last week as a take-or-leave proposition.

The contract at issue covers the work of 120,000 SAG members in prime-time television and movies, an industry still recovering from a 14-week screenwriters strike that ended in February.

“The refusal of SAG’s Hollywood leadership to accept this offer is the latest in a series of actions by SAG leaders that, in our opinion, puts labor peace at risk,” the producers alliance said.

The industry group called again on SAG’s leaders to submit the offer, a package the studios say is worth $250 million in additional compensation to actors over three years, to the union’s rank-and-file for a ratification vote.

“The last thing we need is a long, hot summer of labor strife,” the producers said in their statement.

There was no immediate word from SAG on the outcome of Thursday’s meeting.

The studios’ latest offer to SAG essentially mirrors the terms of a separate TV-only deal ratified on Tuesday by members of the smaller American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, or AFTRA.

The AFTRA deal won approval despite an all-out campaign by SAG to persuade some 40,000 of its members who belong to both unions to reject the settlement, which SAG leaders have branded as inadequate.

As of this week, SAG leaders have downplayed the likelihood of calling a strike, a move that would take weeks to organize and require a 75 percent vote by members.