Actors and Writers Now Picketing Side by Side for First Time in 60+ Years

Ringo Chiu /
Ringo Chiu /

July 14th found members of the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) joining the Writers Guild of America (WGA) in the strike. With over 65,000 members being added to the strike, nearly every TV show, movie, and entertainment series has come to a grinding halt.

The last time this happened was in 1960. At the time the SAG-AFTRA President was Ronald Reagan.

At the core of each strike, is the money being generated by studios via streaming services. They want to see their contracts do a better job of keeping pace with inflation.

Additionally, higher and longer streaming residual payments and the use of guardrails against artificial intelligence that can fake their work in films and TV shows are a must-have for them.

SAG-AFTRA President Fran Drescher gave a passionate statement when announcing the strike on the 13th.

“We had no choice. We are the victims here. We are being victimized by a very greedy entity. I am shocked by the way the people that we have been in business with are treating us. I cannot believe it, quite frankly: How far apart we are on so many things. How they plead poverty, that they’re losing money left and right when giving hundreds of millions of dollars to their CEOs.”

At the start of the strike, there are no plans for talks to begin, and no plans to stop the strike any time soon. With so many under-used and underpaid members striking, many believe the leaders of Hollywood think all they have to do is wait them out or hire those willing to cross the picket line.

However, with the widespread ripple of this shutdown, will there even be people left to fill the roles if this goes on too long?