Let me be the first to give you the best news I could ever give in my years, past, present and future, as an entertainment reporter.
THE WRITER’S STRIKE IS OVER!!!!!
At least according to an article posted over on cnbc.com. Read the full article here.
Jackass deluxe Michael Eisner has spoken to the press about the conclusion of the strike (started on Nov. 5), saying that the Writer’s Guild of America (WGA) and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) have reached a tentative agreement, set for final approval on Saturday. This will end the now 14 week, 4 day strike which has had a strangle hold on American film and television productions, and all but canceled several major awards shows.
I must quote Jon Stewart (update, if you will) on how the strike has impacted TV and Film, particularly late night comedy shows. This was said upon his return to the air on Jan. 7th: “We have been off the air for 8 weeks. And the last time the late night shows went off the air for an extended period of time, was after 9/11. And that was for only a week. So by my math, the writer’s strike is 8 times worse than 9/11.”
Obviously there’s a hint of sarcasm in there.
For those of you who don’t know what the strike was all about, let me try to explain it as best as I can.
The last time the writer’s contracts were negotiated, was in 2005. And this left out residuals of internet presentations, be it downloads or streaming on the site, as this was a brand new technology no one had really taken advantage of yet. So now, cut to 2007, you can download a plethora of shows on iTunes, and all the major networks put full episodes of their shows online. The writers are not seeing any of the money. None of it.
Now, as an aspiring writer, I sympathize. If people were making money off of something I wrote, I’d want some of that two. But here’s the thing of it all. The money, the profits, that the producers and network heads are seeing, is a monetarily insignificant amount. To slice that up into even smaller chunks, would make the whole process cost-ineffective.
To quote jackass deluxe Michael Eisner from a Nov. 7th Fox News interview, “For a writer to give up today’s money for a nonexistent piece of the future — they should [strike] in three years, shouldn’t be doing it now — they are misguided.” He goes on to say, “They don’t know what to give. … Digital will eventually be the dominant medium for distribution but not yet.”
So why did they strike if there’s no money to be had? Producers and studio heads are stupid and kept going on and on about how digital presentation is doing so well. But really it wasn’t.
The studios are like that jerk at the bar who goes on and on about how great he is at such and such sport or whatever, and the writers are the quiet guy in the corner (not nerdy quiet, I’m talking Wolverine quiet), who calls him out on it and wins.
Alls I know is, thank god TV will be back. Though who knows how the networks are going to structure their seasons, since most shows are only halfway through with no new episodes to air, and it’ll take some time for production to get rolling again.
But the most important thing… strike is over. Maybe my writer’s block I’ve been having will finally clear up.