WGA Members Divided Over 'Writers Room Minimums,' a Crucial Issue in Strike Negotiations
The Writers Guild of America (WGA) is standing firm on their demand for writers room minimums during strike negotiations. Despite some conce...
The Writers Guild of America (WGA) Stands Firm on Writers Room Minimums
The Writers Guild of America (WGA) is standing firm on their demand for writers room minimums during strike negotiations. Despite some concessions made by the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, such as providing streaming viewership data, the two parties have not reached an agreement on having a set minimum number of writers on every project. This has led to frustration among some WGA members. The strike has been ongoing for several months.
Reduction in Minimum Number of Writers for TV Shows
The Writers Guild of America (WGA) has agreed to reduce the minimum number of writers required for TV shows. Previously, shows needed a minimum of six to 12 writers depending on the number of episodes in a season. However, the WGA has now agreed to reduce that number by one writer. Despite this reduction, the concept of writers room minimums will still be in place.
Opposition to Mandated Minimums
According to an anonymous showrunner and a writer, there is opposition to a decision that has been made. The showrunners are against this decision, stating that it doesn't make sense to anyone. They believe that those showrunners who want a staff should have one, but it is not necessary to force those who do not want a staff to have one.
Some showrunners are expressing their opposition to the idea of mandated minimums for hiring writers. They argue that they don't need that many writers and that hiring additional ones would be seen as a burden by the existing team. Dissenters also believe that these minimums could lead to "featherbedding," which involves hiring employees who don't actually contribute to the work.
The writer shares a personal experience of being in a job where they were paid to do nothing. They express that while having a guaranteed job may seem appealing, it can actually be detrimental to one's career in the long run. The writer refers to this type of job as a "poisoned chalice," suggesting that it may not be as desirable as it seems.
Debate on Writer Minimums and Creative Freedom
In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Taylor Sheridan, the creator of the popular TV show "Yellowstone," expressed his thoughts on writer minimums. While many creators have not publicly shared their opinions on the matter, Sheridan believes that the freedom of the artist to create should not be restricted. He stated that if he were required to check in creatively with others for a story that he has fully developed in his mind, it would likely hinder his ability to tell TV stories. Sheridan's comments highlight the ongoing debate surrounding writer minimums and the impact they may have on the creative process.
According to an anonymous showrunner, having a mandated number of writers can lead to a "too many cooks" situation in television shows. The showrunner argues that some of the most creatively daring shows on TV have been written by a single writer, as a distinct voice can enhance the quality of the show.
Union members believe that support for a specific stipulation comes from a fear of job loss. It is estimated that the number of working TV writers may decrease by 30-40%.