The Hollywood Writers Strike

What is it and how does it affect the future of entertainment?

All over Hollywood, shows have been canceled, movies have been delayed and countless writers have left their jobs. The reason for this is the Writers Union Strike, where the writers union is not working to protest the worsening conditions for them in Hollywood. Many loyal viewers of television have been confused or concerned about the strike. It started May 1st, and has no set end date, unless the union comes to an agreement with studios.

What is the Writers Strike?

The Writers Guild of America represents about 10,000 screenwriters across the country. All the writers that are part of the union are protesting by not showing up to their jobs such as late night shows, television series and movies who rely on writers to complete them. They will not stop picketing in front of studios until they reach a fair agreement with studios, streaming platforms or stations.

Why are they doing this?

Usually, writers are paid royalties around $900 dollars every time an episode is broadcasted on a TV station. However, the rise of streaming services has greatly changed their income and working conditions. Now, screenwriters are paid a flat single time royalty of around $700 dollars when their series is put on a streaming service. They have a large decrease in wages but are also pressured to work quicker and more strenuous hours so the streaming service can meet the demand for their films. With all of this mistreatment, the WGA has decided to postpone their work and go on strike until they reach a better revenue agreement with studios, streaming services and network executives.

What will be the effects of the strike?

Late night shows such as The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Saturday Night Live and many more are canceled until the strike is over. Shows like this rely on writers’ quick writing, and by their cancellation showcase the importance of screenwriters. Additionally, popular series such as Stranger Things have been delayed due to the strike. A quote from the Stranger Things Twitter page says, While we’re excited to start production with our amazing cast and crew, it is not possible during this strike. We hope a fair deal is reached soon so we can all get back to work”. Many other popular series and movies have been delayed such as Severance, Abbott Elementary, and Marvel’s Blade.

What can normal citizens do to help?

The best that citizens who aren’t part of the WGA can do is attend picketing protests. Additionally, voicing your opinions online about series being delayed can show studios the importance of writers. Most importantly, recognize why the strike is happening and appreciate all the work these writers have done purely for our entertainment.