WGA President on strategy; picket lines everywhere

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WGA STRIKE CENTRAL: DAY 3


As the WGA East picketers hit the streets of NYC, intermingling with pedestrians, the WGA West folks are right on the studio lots, often standing near the employees and execs’ cars as they drive into work. Picketing at Universal Studios in LA was accompanied by vehicles honking their horns in support. Several members of SAG reportedly joined WGA lines including Desperate Housewives’ Marc Cherry, Frances Fisher, Justine Bateman, Frasier creator Peter Casey, Drew Carey creator Bruce Helford and CSI’s Carol Mendelsohn.

Meanwhile, WGA West President Patric Verrone issued a statement, addressing their decision to remove DVD from the table-a decision which was met with significant disappointment and even anger from many of their members: "The reason for that decision was strategic and followed several back-channel assurances that, if DVDs were dropped, we would be able to make sufficient progress in new media so that a strike could be averted. This offer, combined with our desire to do everything within our power to make a good deal without a strike (by removing management’s strike issue), as well as some small movement at the bargaining table early on Sunday, provoked our decision to make that move. Unfortunately, the response we got was not as promised and management broke off talks before our new media proposals were seriously addressed. Our new comprehensive proposal (including the DVD removal) was presented in an off-the-record session: our new proposal was then rejected. Based on what I saw and heard on the picket lines today, therefore, all bets are off and what we achieve in this negotiation will be a function of how much we are willing to fight to get our fair share of the residuals of the future, no matter how they are delivered."

WGA West issued a picket count for Monday:
CBS Radford
527
Prospect
116
CBS Television City
195
Paramount/Raleigh
286 +10 SAG
Culver Studios
115
Raleigh Manhattan Beach
111
Disney
190
Sony
215 + 7 SAG
FOX
520 + 25 SAG
Sunset Gower
125
Hollywood Center
93
Universal
220 + 4 SAG
NBC Burbank 121 Warner 195


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