Guild adds as many as 100 to list
Continuing to take a hard line against those who crossed picket lines last year, SAG will soon name names of many more strikebreakers, adding as many as 100 to the list of seven publicly identified and banned from the guild so far.
SAG’s national board endorsed the move on a near-unanimous vote last week but left the details of how to make the disclosure up to individual branches.
As of late June, SAG had banned 75 thesps for periods ranging from six months to five years, with the Hollywood branch responsible for 39. Penalties were doled out by SAG’s membership application review committees, which have since handled several dozen additional cases of applicants suspected of performing or auditioning for struck work.
The hearings, set to continue for the rest of the year, have used evidence gathered on more than 1,500 nonmembers for working during the bitter six-month strike against advertisers. The guild’s national board backed off earlier this year on a previous policy to permanently bar non-union strikebreakers from joining, opting instead for the maximum five-year exclusion.
The coming announcements of IDs will be first in over six months. In February, SAG announced Christine Blackburn had been banned for five years after trying to join SAG despite having shot more than 20 non-union ads during the strike. Guild also identified four members — Ben Brunkow, Kevin Buzzard, David Gene Garrison and Steve Perkins — found guilty of performing struck work.
SAG’s first announcements came last year after it conducted trial boards against Elizabeth Hurley and Tiger Woods, who were found guilty and agreed to $100,000 fines.
Though SAG urges producers to bypass non-union actors, it cannot legally prevent such work, so SAG’s latest move has two goals: to embarrass strikebreakers publicly and emphasize how seriously it takes strikebreaking.