The Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers, which represents Hollywood studios in contract talks with striking writers, said it offered wage increases of close to $97 million (about Rs. 792 crore). That’s more than double the $41 million (about Rs. 335 crore) the writers claim they are being offered, the studios said in a statement Thursday.
The Writers Guild of America, which represents some 11,500 screenwriters nationally, went on strike Tuesday, knocking late-night talk shows off the air and threatening the production of hundreds of TV programs and films, including ones for the upcoming fall season. Their talks broke down on Monday after six weeks of negotiations.
The writers said earlier this week that they’re seeking minimum staffing levels and employment terms on TV series. The union wants at least six writers on an episodic TV show and commitments for 13 weeks of work on programs made for streaming.
The studios said Thursday they couldn’t support those requests.
“If writing needs to be done, writers are hired, but these proposals require the employment of writers whether they’re needed for the creative process or not,” their statement said.
Another flash point is the use of artificial intelligence in screenwriting. The guild is asking the studios to not use the technology. The studios said the issue raises “hard, important creative and legal questions.”
Writers want to use artificial intelligence software in their work, but AI material can’t be copyrighted, the studios said. Only writers will be paid for scripts and AI-generated material would not receive writing credit, according to the studios.
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