SAG-AFTRA, Companies Extend Contract Another 24 Hours

For a second day in a row, SAG-AFTRA and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers have agreed to extend the current TV and movie contracts for 24 hours.

The deals had been set to expire at midnight tonight. As with Monday night, the union and the producers made the joint announcement less than an hour before contract expiration and said they would have no further comment.

The talks, which began May 5, have been held under a strict news blackout.

SAG-AFTRA national exec director David White (pictured above) has led the negotiations for the union. Carol Lombardini, president of the AMPTP, is the lead negotiator for the companies.

People familiar with the negotiations say that they were originally planned to conclude June 13, but have continued due to unresolved issues raised by the 2012 merger of SAG and AFTRA.

The current SAG and AFTRA master contracts were reached before the 2012 merger of the two unions — forcing negotiators to bargain for the past eight weeks over several complicated issues: whether to create a single new master contract or continue with the current SAG and AFTRA deals; whether the AMPTP will support the union’s goal of merging the separate SAG and AFTRA pension and health plans; and how to equalize AFTRA’s slightly higher pay scale for TV work with SAG’s.

The Directors Guild of America reached its deal on a successor contract with the AMPTP in November — seven months before their contract expired. The new pact went into effect Tuesday.

The Writers Guild of America reached its tentative agreement with the companies in early April, a month before the May 1 expiration.

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