The force majeure ax has swung at ABC Studios, which today notified more than a dozen writers that it was terminating their overall deals as a result of the strike.
While all the major studios had previously suspended deals for their scribes, the ABC Studios move reps the biggest actiom yet by a major to cut ties to talent.
Among the scribes terminated: Bill Callahan (“Scrubs”), Larry Charles (“Curb Your Enthusiasm”), Sean Bailey (“Gone Baby Gone”) and the team of Joshua Sternin and Jeffrey Ventimilia (“That 70s Show,” “Surviving Christmas”). Thesp Taye Diggs, who had a production deal at ABC Studios, has also had his pact terminated.
Agents were still notifying clients of Disney’s action, and more names are expected to leak out over the weekend. Other studios are said to be seriously considering taking similar action.
“The ongoing strike has had a significant detrimental impact on development and production so we are forced to make the difficult decision to release a number of talented, respected individuals from their development deals,” ABC Studios said in a statement late Friday.