The Writers Guild of America (WGA) said Monday that it had reached a “tentative agreement” with major Hollywood studios, potentially ending a nearly five month-long strike that has brought film and television production to a standstill.
The WGA, representing over 11,000 writers, said a tentative deal with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) has been reached, but that they are still finalizing the “contract language.”
“What we have won in this contract—most particularly, everything we have gained since May 2nd—is due to the willingness of this membership to exercise its power, to demonstrate its solidarity, to walk side-by-side, to endure the pain and uncertainty of the past 146 days,” it said in a letter to members.
The WGA said the tentative deal is “exceptional—with meaningful gains and protections for writers in every sector of the membership.” The terms of the agreement were not immediately available.
“What remains now is for our staff to make sure everything we have agreed to is codified in final contract language,” the organization said.
“And though we are eager to share the details of what has been achieved with you, we cannot do that until the last ‘i’ is dotted. To do so would complicate our ability to finish the job. So, as you have been patient with us before, we ask you to be patient again—one last time,” it added.
The memorandum of agreement with AMPTP will go through votes for ratification. It will first be presented to WGA’s negotiating committee for a vote, followed by a review by the WGA West’s Board and the WGA East’s Council.
The Board and Council will vote on whether to authorize a contract ratification vote by the membership and if that authorization is approved, they will next decide whether to lift the restraining order and end the strike.
The WGA said that members are not to resume work “until specifically authorized to by the Guild.” Instead, it encouraged members to join the picket line for the actors’ strike this week.
“We are still on strike until then. But we are, as of today, suspending WGA picketing,” it stated.
The agreement comes just five days before the strike would have become the longest in the guild’s history and the longest Hollywood strike in more than 70 years.