Aussie actors stage strike

Stoppage cost the industry up to $975,000

SYDNEY — Production of seven Australian drama series and one pic was disrupted Thursday when actors staged a national one-day strike.

However, the threat of further industrial action has eased after the actors’ union agreed to continue negotiating their claims.

The Screen Producers Assn. of Australia estimates the stoppage cost the industry up to $A1.5 million ($975,000).

SPAA exec director Geoff Brown said he was disappointed the actors decided to strike despite progress in negotiations.

SPAA and Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance reps have agreed to continue negotiating daily rates and contract options that bind thesps to further episodes, and to set a timetable to discuss a new formula for repeats and residuals.

“We have agreed on a process to deal with the outstanding matters within the next seven days and the union has agreed to lift all bans and limitations over this period,” he said.

Among the affected series are “Neighbors,” “All Saints,” “Home and Away” and “McLeod’s Daughters” as well as rehearsals for the pic “Strange Bedfellows,” which stars Paul Hogan and Michael Caton.

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