16 December 2008

Big Name Actors Ask For Strike Authorization Vote to Be Called Off

From The Hollywood Reporter ~ More on the SAG Strike:

Opposing sides butt heads at SAG meeting

Big names petition to cancel strike authorization vote

By Andrew Salomon, Back Stage

NEW YORK -- In the ballroom of a Manhattan hotel Monday night, the two halves of an increasingly ugly marriage continued to dance around the issues that divide them, with neither side willing to concede a single point, much less find common ground.

The contentious and at times bitter meeting capped a roller-coaster four days for SAG, in which opposition to the guild leadership's call for strike authorization has crystallized. Earlier Monday, a group of nearly 150 well-known actors -- including Oscar winners George Clooney, Tom Hanks, Kevin Spacey, Sally Field, Helen Hunt, Charlize Theron and Morgan Freeman -- sent a petition urging the authorization vote to be called off.

Three of the principal architects of the SAG's long-stalled negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers -- national president Alan Rosenberg, national executive director Doug Allen and first vp Anne-Marie Johnson -- flew east to meet with the New York rank and file to sell them on the idea of giving strike authorization to the national board. With it, they have argued, the guild will have the leverage it needs to get the new TV and film contract they want.


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