the striking Writers Guild of America held informal talks
Tuesday with Hollywood studios that could lead to the
resumption of negotiations, a person familiar with the
bargaining strategy said.
preceded an expected guild meeting later in the day that was
to address the union's next step as it seeks a new
contract, said the person who was not authorized to
publicly comment and asked for anonymity. The guild
did not immediately respond to e-mail and phone requests for
between the Writers Guild and the studios' trade group, the
Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, broke
down December 7 after the alliance demanded the guild
take a half-dozen issues off the table, including
unionization of reality TV shows. The guild refused.
meeting held Tuesday was designed to lay the groundwork for
a return to formal bargaining. The approach mirrored a
series of meetings held by the Directors Guild of
America and studio heads before they began formal
negotiations and reached a tentative deal last week after
less than a week of bargaining.
strike that started November 5 has shut down production of
most scripted TV shows, disrupted movie schedules and the
Golden Globes ceremony, and has put next month's
Academy Awards at risk. The informal writers-studio
talks began on the day Oscar nominees were announced.
Directors Guild announced its deal, studio heads urged the
writers to join in talks that could lead to the resumption
of their negotiations. In its deal with producers, the
Directors Guild resolved new-media compensation issues
that are also central to the Writers Guild dispute,
including compensation for movie and TV projects delivered
over the Internet.
said the deal with the Directors Guild established a
precedent for the industry's creative talent to
''participate financially in every emerging area of
new media.'' (AP)