‘Fashion’ crew exits set over contract dispute

Producers of NBC reality series halt shooting after workers walk

Crew members at NBC reality TV series “Fashion Star” walked off the set over the lack of a union contract — resulting in two days of canceled shoots.

Producers halted shooting Saturday and Sunday. About 75 crew members and supporters picketed Saturday at Hollywood Center Studios, including Matthew Loeb, president of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, and West Coast IATSE motion picture topper Mike Miller.

“The Locals are in close contact with the 60-plus crew, who remain united in their desire for health and pension benefits,” IATSE organizer Vanessa Holtgrewe told Variety. “Hopefully, the company reaches out soon so that the crew can go back to work and the show can get back on schedule.”

IATSE successfully organized reality TV series “The Biggest Loser” in 2010.

“Fashion Star” includes Jessica Simpson, Nicole Richie and John Varvatos as judges. Show is produced by Electus, Magical Elves Prods. and 5X5 Media.

Representatives for NBC had no comment. Reps for the producers could not be immediately reached for comment.

Holtgrewe said IATSE will be picketing “Fashion Star” Monday at Hollywood Center Studios and at the Magical Elves offices.

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