You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Bill Oakley exits ‘Sit Down, Shut Up’

Josh Weinstein remains on Fox comedy

Fox’s animated series “Sit Down, Shut Up” is moving forward — but without one of its two showrunners.

Bill Oakley has departed “Sit Down, Shut Up” now that the bulk of the show’s writing staff have agreed to terms offered by producer Sony Pictures TV that will keep it under the jurisdiction of IATSE’s Animation Guild.

That means Oakley and his longtime writing partner Josh Weinstein have split — at least for now. Weinstein has opted to remain with “Sit Down, Shut Up.” Mitch Hurwitz also continues as exec producer.

Weinsten led the list of scribes — which also include Rich Rinaldi, Aisha Muharrar, Alex Herschlag, Laura Gutin, Dan Fybel, Aaron Ehasz, Michael Colton and John Aboud — who sent out a press release explaining their decision to stick with the show, even though it won’t be repped by the Writers Guild.

“This contract is a compromise,” they wrote, “an improvement over the standard (Animation Guild) terms we were initially offered, but not full WGA coverage … Reaching a deal will allow this program to move forward, providing jobs for many writers, animators, actors and production staff.”

Besides Oakley, one other “Sit Down” scribe also opted not to return.

In a statement, the WGA expressed disappointment that most of the writers chose to return — but said they did so after Sony gave each scribe a $200,000 blind script deal and “WGA equivalent residuals.”

“We understand why they did so but wish they hadn’t,” the guild said. “Had they stuck together, we believe that they would have won WGA coverage for ‘Sit Down, Shut Up.’ Two WGA members refused the deal, and we and their fellow writers applaud them.”

Writers on the show had stopped working last month after learning that “Sit Down” wouldn’t be produced under WGA jurisdiction.

Writers and producers were apparently given assurances by some Sony execs that a WGA deal was in the works — but were eventually told that it wouldn’t happen. Sony, meanwhile, then claimed that the scribes should have known that “Sit Down” would be IATSE-repped, given the union’s deal with Sony’s Adelaide Prods.

In the end, the writers sticking with the show said they were given WGA parity in auditable residuals, new media, script fees and merchandising rights. Sony also agreed to send a letter to the Intl. Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees confirming that future writers on the show would be given similar terms.

All of Fox’s other animated primetime series — as well as ABC’s upcoming “The Goode Family” — are covered by the WGA.

More TV

  • HBO Asia and Catchplay Team up

    HBO Asia and Catchplay Team up for ‘The World Between Us’

    Pan-regional pay-TV group HBO Asia and Taiwan-based streaming video company Catchplay are to jointly distribute Taiwanese crime drama “The World Between Us.” The 10-part series will air from March. Directed by award-winning filmmaker Lin Chun-Yang (“The Soul If Bread”) and written by the Lu Shih-Yuan (“Dear Ex”), “World” plunges into the aftermath of a mass [...]

  • BTF Media, Vince Gerardis Pact Sign

    NATPE: BTF Media, Vince Gerardis Pact for Six Projects (EXCLUSIVE)

    MIAMI — BTF Media, producer of breakout series “Hasta Que te Conocí” and “El Secreto de Selena,” is teaming with Vince Gerardis, a co-executive producer with George Martin on “Game of Thrones,” on a six-project co-production alliance. Spearheaded at BTF Media by founder-partner Ricardo Coeto, the agreement takes in the development and co-production of the [...]

  • First Look at SAG Awards' Cuban

    First Look at SAG Awards' Cuban-Inspired After-Party (EXCLUSIVE)

    Celebrities at this year’s SAG Awards won’t have to go far for some tropical fun. Sunday’s annual post-show gala, hosted by People magazine for the 23rd year, is set to feature a Cuban-themed party space adjacent to the Shrine Auditorium. “We’re kind of going back to more of a thematic element. I have some close [...]

  • Young Tony Soprano in 'Sopranos' Movie:

    James Gandolfini's Son Michael Gandolfini Cast as Tony Soprano in 'Sopranos' Movie

    Michael Gandolfini, son of the late James Gandolfini, will play the young Tony Soprano in “The Many Saints of Newark,” the  prequel movie to the television series “The Sopranos.” “It’s a profound honor to continue my dad’s legacy while stepping into the shoes of a young Tony Soprano,” Gandolfini said. “I’m thrilled that I am [...]

  • Ray Romano

    TV Roundup: Netflix Releases First Trailer For New Ray Romano Stand Up Special (Watch)

    In today’s TV News Roundup, Netflix teases new stand up special “Ray Romano: Right Here, Around The Corner.” FIRST LOOKS Ray Romano returns for his first stand up comedy special in 23 years with “Ray Romano: Right Here, Around The Corner.” Doing two shows in one night in Manhattan, Romano riffs on friends, marriage, and [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content