Deadline reports that Hollywood studio execs are supposed to meet tonight in order to “get on the same page” regarding negotiations with the currently striking writing and acting guilds, presumably after the latest round of bad press surrounding the AMPTP’s failure to negotiate in good faith.
The point here is that even if Hollywood trades—of which Deadline is one—probably can’t be trusted entirely to report on the strike with certainty, given their famous relationships with the upper echelons of the industry, the fact that one of them is even reporting something as simple as that some of the biggest names behind Hollywood’s studios are “squabbling” speaks to how poorly the situation is going, and how dire the general perception of the studios during these strikes is, right now. While Deadline doesn’t cite any specific named sources here, and many statements are simply couched in vague comments such as “we hear”—reporter parlance for information sourced on background, from people requesting anonymity—it’s not even remotely surprising given recent events that there’s s a whiff of truth to all this.
While Bob Iger (supposedly) won’t be in attendance—after the Disney head had to walk back his own PR nightmare in the early days of SAG-AFTRA joining the WGA on strike—Deadline reports that Disney’s Dana Walden and Alan Bergman, Mike Hopkins and Jennifer Salke of Amazon Studios, Netflix’s Ted Sarandos, Donna Langley of Universal, and seemingly perpetual Hollywood villain of the week, Warner Bros Discovery CEO David Zaslav, should all be involved with the meeting tonight.
This move is predicated on the leaks and press releases the AMPTP suffered from last week as the rake fully hit them in the face. They had, you’ll remember, asked for a media blackout during earlier August negotiations with the WGA. Then, as soon as they didn’t get their way, they went public with the negotiations—which went very badly for them.
“Before some [studio executives] wanted to blame Carol [Lombardini, president of the AMPTP], accused her of being stuck using a pre-streaming playbook,” one source said to Deadline. “Now that have only themselves to blame for how bad things look. That’s why they brought in [PR film] the Levinson Group, and that’s why they are squabbling.”
Maybe they wouldn’t look bad if the AMPTP actually tried meeting the WGA and SAG-AFTRA in good faith? Just a thought.
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