Former Writers Guild of America West president Patric Verrone and “Arrival” screenwriter Eric Heisserer are among the 15 candidates for eight WGA West board seats.
The guild’s nominating committee made the announcement Thursday. The election will take place on Sept. 18.
The seats are for two-year terms. The president, vice president, secretary-treasurer, and eight other board seats will be up for election next year.
Verrone, best known for leading the 2007-08 strike, is an incumbent on the board. Other incumbents seeking re-election are Patti Carr, Courtney Ellinger, and Jonathan Fernandez. Besides Heisserer, the other candidates include Deborah Amelon, VJ Boyd, Travis Donnelly, Ashley Gable, Akilah Green, Dante W. Harper, Deric A. Hughes, Spiro Skentzos, David Slack, and TV showrunner Betsy Thomas.
Verrone has extensive credits in animation on shows such as “Futurama.” Heisserer was nominated for an Academy Award in the adapted screenplay category for “Arrival.”
Two high-profile board members — “Mad Men” creator Matthew Weiner and “Walking Dead” showrunner Glen Mazzara — have opted not to seek re-election. Both were elected in 2016.
In addition to the candidates selected by the guild’s nominating committee, eligible members may also be nominated by petition. Members seeking nomination for the Board of Directors must obtain 15 member signatures in support of their petitions and submit those by July 23.
The WGA West will host its annual Candidates Night forum, where guild members can meet and pose questions to the candidates, on Aug. 29, at WGA West headquarters in Los Angeles.
The WGA West is currently in a battle with Hollywood’s top talent agencies over what’s perceived by the guild as potential conflicts of interest due to the agencies moving aggressively moving into production — meaning that the same company represents the creative talent on one side of the table and is the employer on the other.
The WGA told members on April 6 that it had sent the Association of Talent Agents a 12-month notice to terminate the existing deal, known as the Artists’ Manager Basic Agreement, and has asked for extensive changes in how agents do business. The terms and conditions of the current agreement will remain in effect through April 6, 2019, but will expire if a new agreement is not reached.
No meetings have been set and leaders of the agencies have privately expressed frustration over what they say is an unwillingness by the WGA to meet informally on the issue.