SAG-AFTRA Responds to Studios’ ‘Best and Final’ Offer

SAG-AFTRA offered its response to the studios’ “last, best and final” offer Monday as Hollywood awaits a resolution to the 116-day actors’ strike.

The union’s negotiating team spent nearly 12 hours on Sunday formulating its response. Details are yet to emerge.

The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers said in a Zoom meeting on Saturday that its current offer was the best it could be and that it would not negotiate further. The offer includes winning bonuses for streaming shows, an increase in minimum charges and protection against artificial intelligence.

Several members of the SAG-AFTRA negotiating team took to Twitter to express their displeasure. Four of them retweeted a call for high-profile actors to pressure studio CEOs to come back with a more favorable deal.

The union may continue to press for additional terms, but by using the term “last, best and final,” the AMPTP seeks to convey that the union’s arguments have been heard and no further concessions can be made.

The studios tried to emphasize that point Saturday by bringing together a larger-than-usual group of CEOs on a Zoom call, including the heads of Paramount, Sony, Amazon and Apple.

The hope is that if SAG-AFTRA agrees to a contract, production can resume in January. But CEOs have already warned that some broadcast shows may not be able to salvage their 13-episode seasons.

Most of the talks before Saturday’s meeting focused on the issue of AI. Among other things, the Union is seeking a veto on AI applications to create “digital doubles”. The union wants minimum wage rates and ironclad consent requirements for using AI to create digital unions.

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Meanwhile, the union continued its pickets in New York and Los Angeles on Monday. SAG-AFTRA plans a regular walkout through Thursday, with Friday scheduled for Veterans Day.

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