Watchdog Exclusive: On the WGA Picket Line. (Photos) AFTRA/ USAN SAG Board members hijack SAG and AFTRA NY membership meetings to berate SAG Hollywood.
It was my second day on the WGA Picket Line at CBS Radford. The first day there were several SAG support signs among the couple of hundred picketers although several Hollywood’s SAG board members made a point of showing their support at various WGA picket lines around town.
The second day the SAG turnout was even greater. Day Two featured a multitude of SAG members, many SAG board members, carrying SAG support signs, along with supporters from the DGA, Musicians union and the Teamsters.
Conspicuously missing from all this support was any sign of AFTRA. But then what would you expect from the current AFTRA leadership which has proven with their lowball contracts that they are more intent on giving away residuals to employers than standing up to keep them
Also, on day one in New York, none of the USAN SAG board members were sighted during the morning call at Rockefeller Plaza. But then perhaps they were more preoccupied with taking over the SAG membership meeting to be held that evening.
According to a member on hand at the meeting, the USAN board and AFTRA board members hogged the microphone from the general membership to berate NED Doug Allen and SAG President Alan Rosenberg, referring to the Hollywood Board which recently swept the SAG elections for the 3rd time in a row as a small faction in Hollywood. (In Hollywood, SAG board members are restricted from the Open Mic session which is reserved for the general membership.)
At the AFTRA membership last week, there was plenty of SAG bashing, one board member equated SAG’s alleged talking behind AFTRA’s back as something Nazi Propagandist Joseph Goebbels would be proud of. (This from the leadership that secretly lowballed SAG’s contracts, and in the process gave up actor’s minimums and residuals, while professing to abide by SAG/AFTRA agreement 99-CVR-17R not to do so. And these are people that will make up half of our negotiating team under Phase One, as we prepare for the upcoming TV/Theatrical contract.)
Anyway, as I walked the WGA picket line, it was nice to observe that there are still entertainment artists that are willing to standup in solidarity for their fair share of what their work generates.
A.L. Miller SW Editor & Chief