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The worldwide International Federation of Film Producers Associations (FIAPF) has called on trade unions to accept more flexible work practices.

The call was made at FIAPF’s second annual Cannes conference, mixing trade body reps and producers from 13 countries, including the U.S., the U.K., Australia, France and South Africa.

Producers’ orgs have committed to meet on a regular basis to advance their campaign. FIAPF director general Valerie Lepine Karnik will organize meetings.

Unions around the world are likely to react with hostility.

Union pay is near sacrosanct in the U.S., but the FIAPF call comes at a delicate time elsewhere. Crew pay is under negotiation in territories such as France, Denmark and New Zealand.

The Danish production sector has successfully established ceilings for crew payment.

Unions fear that, in an increasingly consolidating international film industry, new deal structures in one country will set precedents for other territories.

Proposals backed at the FIAPF conference included flexible scales of pay according to production size for countries that host runaway productions.

Producers condemned “crew creep” in countries.

“A lot of countries, including Canada, the U.K., South Africa and Australia, have dynamic inward investment, driving prices up. Producers must sit down with the unions and negotiate different pay rates for different kinds of production,” said outgoing FIAPF director general Bertrand Moullier.