What’s one sign that a strike might be working? Maybe when one of the handsomely-paid CEOs on the other side of the bargaining table goes on CNBC to complain about you to the Wall Street set.
Disney’s Bob Iger — who made $195 million over the past 5 years — spoke to Squawk Box this morning, hours after the Screen Actors Guild contract expired, saying that, “There’s a level of expectation that they have, that is just not realistic. And they are adding to the set of the challenges that this business is already facing that is, quite frankly, very disruptive.”
Iger added, “It’s very disturbing to me. We’ve talked about disruptive forces on this business and all the challenges we’re facing, the recovery from COVID which is ongoing, it’s not completely back. This is the worst time in the world to add to that disruption.” A very fair point from someone who could avoid all that disruption by paying writers and actors fairly.
These statements come on the heels of a report yesterday that the studios’ masterplan was to wait out the writers, assuming they’d lose their homes and become desperate enough to take whatever deal was offered in the fall.
Adam Conover, a Zelda fan and one of the more visible WGA strike leads, had an interesting response to the comments, referencing the Entertainment Community Fund which will hopefully help writers and other production workers to avoid losing their houses:
Here's what I think of the streamers' cruel plan to "starve us out" pic.twitter.com/XRPzUMrkXr
— Adam Conover (@adamconover) July 13, 2023
If that was a scare tactic to bring SAG to heel, it didn’t work. SAG President Fran Drescher said that, “The companies have refused to meaningfully engage on some topics and on others completely stonewalled us. Until they do negotiate in good faith, we cannot begin to reach a deal.” She added that the studios have been “insulting and disrespectful” at the bargaining table.
As of this writing, it looks like a SAG strike will begin today, which would effectively stop all major production as its 160,000 members join the picket line with writers.
I’ve said it many times….. This shit gets Colder than the Streets at times.. smh https://t.co/7ZoqOuqnyv
— ICE T (@FINALLEVEL) July 13, 2023