The unions asserted that they achieving “unprecedented” coordination in crafting the standards for re-opening Hollywood in the statement signed by SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris, Directors Guild of American chief Thomas Schlamme and Matthew Loeb, president of International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees. The unions are working with studio executives and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers on safety protocols developed by a task force derived from the long-established Industry-Wide Labor-Management Safety Committee.
“We all want folks to get back to work as soon as possible, but we need to do it right,” the union leaders said in the brief statement. “At this time, no final draft of the Industry Task Force White Paper exists, and it would be premature to agree to or comment on standards that have not even been finalized. As we create our back-to-work plans, the level of coordination between our unions has been unprecedented in frequency and productivity.”
The statement appears to be an effort to dispel recent reports of discord about the entertainment industry’s efforts to develop safety protocols — at least among the Hollywood’s key labor unions, which represent more than 330,000 members.
Development of the rules for restarting production have apparently delayed delayed the presentation of the industry’s back-to-work plan to state and local officials. As Variety has reported, jumpstarting production amid the coronavirus pandemic will be complicated and expensive.
The industry task force that was assembled last month to address the safety issues has generated a 30-page draft of a white paper that is designed to convince governmental officials to give Hollywood the greenlight to resume production.
A copy of that draft is believed to have made its way to California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office, which spurred his May 20 announcement that the state planned to issue guidelines for resuming TV and film production on May 25. But that news is now expected to arrive later this week.