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Hollywood Actors Join Screenwriters in Historic Joint Strike, Halting Production

The Hollywood Actors Guild agreed Thursday to join screenwriters in the first joint strike in more than six decades that has brought production to a halt in the entertainment industry, after talks about signing new contracts with studios and broadcast services stalled.

And the production of series and films in Hollywood entered a stage of stagnation, with the actors joining the scriptwriters who have been on strike for more than two months, which could lead to the “worst paralysis” in the sector in more than 60 years, according to AFP.

And the Actors Union announced that its strike will start from Friday, after the failure of negotiations with studios and streaming platforms.

“We had no choice. We are the victims. We are the victims of a very greedy entity,” said Fran Drescher, head of the union representing 160,000 actors and workers in television and cinema.

The former star of “The Nanny” described the decision as a “historic moment”.

“If we don’t stand up now…we are all at risk of being replaced by the big machines and corporations that Wall Street cares about more than you and your family,” she added.

Actors and screenwriters are calling for an improvement in their “low” salaries in light of “rapid change and uncertainty in the entertainment industry” caused by factors such as “the proliferation of streaming, collapsing box office revenues and artificial intelligence,” according to the newspaper.Washington Post“.

Both writers and actors are pressing for changes related to the compensation they receive, in a manner that takes into account the high rates of inflation and the decline in their incomes, given the trend of new broadcasting platforms towards reducing the time periods of the works in which they participate, in addition to their failure to benefit from the revenues of re-broadcasting them.

The rise of Netflix and other streaming platforms has upended decades-old business practices that have led workers to believe that Hollywood’s current model is “fundamentally broken,” according to the website.Axios“.

And the streaming broadcast model proved to be much less profitable than expected, prompting investors to cut spending and thus putting pressure on ordinary workers, while CEOs still receive huge salary packages, according to the same source.

And the new changes in the world of digital broadcasting caused a decrease in the rates of remuneration that actors receive for each rerun of a movie or series for them.

Without this basic income that helps professionals in the cinematic field to continue during the break between two jobs, many workers in the cinema confirm that their “careers are unstable.”

Also, workers in the creative production sector seek guarantees that prevent the use of artificial intelligence programs, whether to write scripts for works, or to reproduce their voices and images.

Both writers and actors see the use of unfettered AI as an “existential threat” to them, according to Andrew Susskind, an associate professor in the Department of Film and Television at Drexel University, who has spent 30 years in the creative industry as a freelance writer, producer and director.

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