While maintaining radio silence about its negotiations with the majors, the WGA has signed two more interim deals with indie producers — Lionsgate and Marvel.
That brings the number of such pacts to an even dozen in less than a month since David Letterman’s Worldwide Pants signed the initial agreement.
The deals represent the WGA’s “divide and conquer” strategy of putting pressure on the majors by demonstrating that the terms it seeks are reasonable. For Lionsgate, the deal is particularly helping in allowing the company to begin work again on its TV shows such as “Mad Men” and “Weeds.”
WGA West president Patric Verrone and WGA East president Michael Winship issued a statement jointly “Lionsgate is considered a leader in the industry, and its signing an interim agreement again confirms that it is possible for both writers to be compensated fairly and respectfully for their work and for companies to operate profitably.”
The AMPTP reiterated its statement about such deals: “These one-off agreements are meaningless because the companies signing them know they will not have to abide by their terms for very long, since they’ll be superseded by whatever final industry-wide accords are reached. If companies truly had to live by the terms of these one-off agreements, we are confident none would ever be signed.”
— Dave McNary