Hollywood in stand-off as actors reject pay offer

July 12th, 2008 - 2:04 pm ICT by IANS  

Los Angeles, July 12 (DPA) Leaders of Hollywood’s largest acting union have rejected a pay deal offered by an alliance of Hollywood production companies, increasing the likelihood that the movie industry could be hit by a second crippling stoppage in a year. Leaders of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) also rejected the call by the producers’ alliance, the Association of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), to put the offer to a full vote of the union’s members.

The AMPTP says the offer includes some $250 million in pay increases for the 120,000 SAG members over the three year contract term. But SAG is digging in its heels for increased residual payments when members’ work is used on the internet or other new media.

The guild made a counteroffer Thursday that adopted some of the studios’ proposals. The studios, however, rejected it, saying that their offer was not subject to negotiation.

Members of a smaller, rival actors’ union Tuesday approved a new contract with Hollywood’s major production companies, increasing the pressure on SAG to accept a similar deal. But SAG president Alan Rosenberg rejected calls to put the offer to a full vote.

“Our negotiating committee to a person, including representatives from across the country, does not believe this deal is acceptable,” he told the New York Times Friday. “When we put something in front of members, I want to make sure it’s something they can live with.”

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