The deal brings an end to months-long halt in production, allowing thousands in film and TV to resume work.
The board members from the Hollywood actors’ union have approved a deal with major studios, ending the months-long strikes that had halted the production of hundreds of films and television shows.
On Thursday, the actors’ union said a preliminary deal had been negotiated and agreed to with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), which represents media companies including Netflix, Paramount and Walt Disney.
The deal included a new three-year contract, valued at more than $1bn and included increases in minimum salaries as well as a new “streaming participation”.
In a news conference on Friday afternoon, Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists’ (SAG-AFTRA) executive director and chief negotiator, announced that this tentative agreement had been approved with 86 percent of the vote.
Crabtree-Ireland added the deal “will keep the motion picture industry sustainable as a profession for working-class performers”.
What’s under the contract?
The union’s board members did not specify who disapproved of the deal, but contract provisions surrounding the control of artificial intelligence (AI) were among the last sticking points in the agreement.
“AI was a dealbreaker,” SAG-AFTRA President Fran Drescher told the Associated Press.
Currently, under the deal, when artificial intelligence is used for a movie or show an actor is already working on, they will now be compensated the same as if they’d actually performed what their digital likeness does, the guild said. Companies will need to negotiate new permission to use a likeness in a new project.
The contract also includes the creation of a new fund to pay performers for future viewings of their work on streaming services, and a 7 percent general wage increase and an 11 percent increase for background actors are effective immediately.
Meanwhile, the deal specifies production sets must have intimacy coordinators for any scenes involving nudity, and proper hair and makeup studios for performers who require them.
Overall, after months of angry protests by guild leaders, actors and union members, the atmosphere outside SAG-AFTRA’s Los Angeles headquarters on Friday afternoon was upbeat.
When SAG-AFTRA had walked out in mid-July, Hollywood writers were also on strike.
The writers’ union also resolved their dispute in late September, saying they had secured “meaningful gains and protections for writers”.
The breakthrough means Hollywood can ramp up to full production for the first time since May, once union members vote to ratify the deal in the coming weeks.
The three-year contract goes to a vote from the actor union’s members, beginning on Tuesday and continuing through December.