SAG eyes TV/film pact

Top brass reassure members of effort

SAG’s top exec has reassured thesps he’s trying to break the stalemate with congloms on the feature-primetime contract.

“While the rigorous confidentiality required in negotiation settings prevents me from providing a full update here, I want to assure you that we are working deliberately, and with as much haste as possible, to conclude our talks and bring to you, the members, a deal for your ratification,” said national interim exec director David White in a message sent to members Tuesday evening.

White said there are no dates scheduled for a return to formal negotiations. “However, our negotiators are active behind the scenes,” he added.

Communication with members was White’s first other than a message he sent when Doug Allen was ousted as national exec director on Jan. 26.

The Screen Actors Guild has yet to acknowledge informal moves by Tom Hanks and other high-profile thesps to persuade the congloms to find a compromise on the issue of when SAG’s feature-primetime contract would expire. The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers has also not commented.

SAG and the AMPTP nearly reached a deal on Feb. 19, but those talks collapsed over the contract expiration date — with SAG pushing for a mid-2011 expiration in line with the pacts of other unions while the AMPTP insisted on a full three-year term from the date of ratification. SAG members are working under terms of a contract that expired June 30.

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