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SAG-AFTRA Approves Deal to End Historic 118-Day Hollywood Strike

SAG-AFTRA strike
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Actors can go back to work as the strike ends at 12:01 a.m. on Thursday.

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SAG-AFTRA negotiators have agreed to a tentative deal that will end the longest actors' strike in Hollywood history.

The announcement from the negotiators said the 118-day strike would end at 12:01 a.m. on Thursday, according to Variety.

The agreement was approved unanimously. It will now go to the SAG-AFTRA national board for approval on Friday. SAG-AFTRA is a union that represents tens of thousands of actors.

In an email to members, SAG-AFTRA leadership wrote:

In a contract valued at over one billion dollars, we have achieved a deal of extraordinary scope that includes "above-pattern" minimum compensation increases, unprecedented provisions for consent and compensation that will protect members from the threat of AI, and for the first time establishes a streaming participation bonus. Our Pension & Health caps have been substantially raised, which will bring much needed value to our plans. In addition, the deal includes numerous improvements for multiple categories including outsize compensation increases for background performers, and critical contract provisions protecting diverse communities.

Actors started striking in July, a month after writers went on strike, largely upset about streaming services's pay structures and artificial intelligence tech.

"It was the first time since 1960, when Ronald Reagan was the head of the actors’ union and Marilyn Monroe was still starring in films, that actors and writers were both on strike," the New York Times wrote.

Negotiators have spent days putting together the final deal. It will reportedly include protections against AI and significant pay increases.

Full details of the deal are expected to be known on Friday after the national vote, Variety reports.

Related: LGBTQ+ Representation Increases in Movies, But More Can Be Done: GLAAD

A stickler in negotiations has been AI. However, SAG-AFTRA’s top negotiator, Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, met with the CEO of the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, Carol Lombardini, in a virtual meeting Wednesday and hammered out the remaining concerns.

Union members will still vote on accepting the deal. Outlets note that this could take a week or longer. However, because the strike is over on Thursday morning, actors can start back at work Thursday as well.

Studios had warned that if a deal wasn’t met soon, the 2023-23 television season would essentially be gone.

Variety reports that the longest actors strike before this one occurred in 1980 and lasted 95 days.

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