Why Actors Are Going on Strike

By Laura Zornosa

Updated: July 12, 2023 4:37 pm EDT | Originally Published: July 12, 2023 4:28 pm EDT

SAG-AFTRA members walk the picket line in solidarity with striking WGA workers
SAG-AFTRA members walk the picket line in solidarity with striking WGA workers outside Netflix offices on July 11, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. There is potential for an actors’ strike: SAG-AFTRA and top studios and streamers have agreed to extend their current contract negotiations until July 12 at 11:59 p.m. 
Mario Tama—Getty Images 

On June 5, nearly 65,000 of the approximately 160,000 members that make up SAG-AFTRA approved a strike authorization with a 97.91% “yes” vote. The union includes actors, dancers, DJs, puppeteers, recording artists, singers, stunt performers, voiceover artists, and other media professionals. 

Two days later, SAG-AFTRA entered negotiations on its agreement with the AMPTP, including Amazon/MGM, Apple, NBCUniversal, Disney/ABC/Fox, Netflix, Paramount/CBS, Sony, and Warner Brothers. On June 30, the contracts between the two were extended, and they now expire at midnight on Wednesday. 

“There has been a sea change in the entertainment industry, from the proliferation of streaming platforms to the recent explosion of generative AI, and at stake is the ability of our members to make a living,” Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, the SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director and Chief Negotiator, said in a letter about the strike authorization referendum. “We must ensure that new developments in the entertainment industry are not used to devalue or disrespect the performers who bring productions to life.” 

Continue reading the story here…  

By Kai Kelley Jr. (he/him)
Kai Kelley Jr. (he/him) Assistant Director, Entertainment, Media & Arts Career Community