An official with IATSE told members on Tuesday that the studios are refusing to make the necessary concessions to avoid a strike, although negotiations are still underway.
Cathy Repola, the national executive director of the Motion Picture Editors Guild, told members in an email on Tuesday that the pace of the talks is quickening, and that the timetable continues to be “days, not weeks.”
“In the wake of the overwhelming strike authorization vote, the employers repeatedly refuse to do what it will take to achieve a fair deal,” Repola wrote. “Either they don’t recognize what has changed in our industry and among our members or they don’t care. Or both.”
The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees has threatened to strike if the studios are unwilling to make significant improvements on a set of issues, including long hours and streaming residuals. A strike would send 60,000 film and TV workers to the picket lines, and bring nearly all production across the country to a standstill.
The union has been in bargaining with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers for seven of the last eight days, ever since nearly 99% of the union voted to support a strike authorization.
The AMPTP presented a new proposal on Oct. 5, and IATSE offered its own counteroffer on Saturday, according to those familiar with the talks. IATSE officials have acknowledged that many of the members are growing frustrated with the drawn-out negotiations.
“Despite our best efforts at the table, the pace of negotiations does not reflect the urgency of the situation,” Repola told the membership on Tuesday.
Repola also noted that IATSE is fighting for many of the same issues confronting other unions across the country: “decent wages, health and safety and humane working conditions.”
“Dignity for workers is at the core of what we are all fighting for,” she wrote. “On Friday night we told you ‘Days not weeks’ and that is still the case. It is more important than ever to stay in touch and stay connected with each other in IASolidarity as the pace quickens and we move forward.”