WGA: Hol­ly­wood writ­ers will fire agents

The Fresno Bee (Sunday) - - News - BY DAVID NG

An ef­fort by writ­ers and their agents to re­solve a dis­pute over in­dus­try prac­tices col­lapsed Fri­day night as the Writ­ers Guild of Amer­ica said it had not reached a set­tle­ment to end the stand­off that has kept Hol­ly­wood on edge.

The WGA said that the agen­cies haven’t pro­vided them with a fair of­fer and that its mem­bers would move for­ward with plans to fire their agents.

“We know that, to­gether, we are about to en­ter un­charted wa­ters,” WGA lead­ers said in an email to mem­bers. “Life that de­vi­ates from the cur­rent sys­tem might be var­i­ous de­grees of dis­ori­ent­ing. But it has be­come clear that a big change is nec­es­sary.”

The tal­ent agen­cies said in a sep­a­rate state­ment that the writ­ers re­jected their lat­est of­fer, which was pre­sented Wed­nes­day and in­cluded a con­ces­sion about profit shar­ing.

“Un­for­tu­nately, not to our sur­prise, the WGA did not ac­cept our of­fer, did not pro­vide coun­ter­pro­pos­als and re­fused to ne­go­ti­ate fur­ther. We’re pre­pared to con­tinue to fight for the best in­ter­ests of writ­ers and all artists,” said Karen Stu­art, the ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the Assn. of Tal­ent Agents, the or­ga­ni­za­tion that rep­re­sents the agen­cies.

The ne­go­ti­a­tions have kept the en­ter­tain­ment in­dus­try in a state of sus­pense.

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