Pact to include more than $120 mil in pay hikes

Details of Tuesday night’s three-year agreement between actors and studios remained under wraps but the pact is expected to result in over $120 million of pay hikes for the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television & Radio Artists. Neither side will release specifics until the agreement is sent out to the 135,000 SAG/AFTRA members for ratification as early as next week, but key provisions include:

  • Actors will receive a 3% hike in minimums, currently at $617 a day and $2,142 per week, for the first two years and a 3.5% hike in the third year.

  • Increases in the minimums for guest stars on TV shows and for stunt coordinators.

  • Fox Network residuals, now at 66% of those paid by ABC, CBS and NBC, will be bumped upward to 80% in the first year, 90% in the second and 100% in the third.

  • Foreign TV residuals will be uncapped for the first time, with additional payments going to actors once sales targets on programs are met.

  • Actors will receive an increase in pension and health plan contributions; for the first time, they will receive P&H coverage for work performed for distribution on the Internet.

  • The higher pay TV formula rather than the video formula will be used for the fledgling movies-on- demand format.

  • A significant increase in basic cable residuals will be implemented following a SAG-AFTRA proposal calling for companies to make their pension and health contributions directly to the P&H plan rather than taking them out of the actors’ 6% cut of license fees. The revamped system of contributions, which amounts to a 13% increase in cable residuals for actors, is in line with the AMPTP’s current agreements with the WGA and the Directors Guild of America.

  • Actors will receive an improvement on buyout rates for feature films.

  • The actors were unable to achieve any changes in the video/DVD residual payout, under which companies exclude 80% of revenues as manufacturing costs, and no language promising the companies will take steps to stop runaway production.

  • The companies were unable to get a discounted wage formula for actors who speak less than four lines.
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