The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees has approved the largest industry strike in Hollywood history. The vote took place from October 1 to October 3. And the IATSE strike vote results are almost unanimous yes with almost 100% turnout. But that does not mean that the strike has started. Here’s what you need to know about what happens next for the TV and film industry.
Is IATSE going on strike?
IATSE has been advocating for better working conditions for its more than 60,000 members for months. The union is in talks with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP). And the talks have reached an impasse, which has led to this strike authority vote. Activists demanding better treatment, pay and a commitment to contracts for their workers have shared their “Hollywood horror stories” on the increasingly popular IATSE Stories Instagram account in recent weeks.
Crew members on film/TV sets have had elaborate terrifying experiences such as being in a car accident on the way home from work due to severe lack of sleep. Their salaries are also very low on many jobs, with some workers having to resort to selling their plasma to get hired. Workers are also denied legally required leave and are not given eating time on 14+-hour days. Studios are able to meet this legal requirement by opting to pay fees that occur when breaks are skipped. The IATSE is trying to negotiate a higher penalty to prevent such a budget from happening.
IATSE is demanding higher wages and humane working conditions for its members. And the IATSE strike vote results have now authorized IATSE International President Matthew Loeb to authorize the strike, possibly in the near future. As of 4 October, the strike has not started. But it may be imminent if AMPTP is not committed to making changes in a satisfactory manner.
Hollywood Horror Stories: How the IATSE Strike Vote Could Cause the Biggest Film Industry Rebellion Since World War II
IATSE strike authorization almost 100% passed
on 4 October, IATSE 89.66% of the members declared to vote in the strike authority, totaling 53,411 votes. Of that group of voters, 98.68% voted yes. The authority needed 52,706 votes to pass. Loeb said in a statement:
“The members have spoken loud and clear. The vote is about the quality of life as well as the health and safety of those working in the film and television industry. Our people have basic human needs such as time for meals, adequate sleep and weekends. For those at the bottom of the pay scale, they deserve nothing less than a living wage. “
Again, this does not mean that the strike has begun. This means that Loeb and Union return to their negotiations with the AMPTP. And this time with a huge amount of leverage. Loeb said he wanted to avoid a strike that would immediately shut down almost all film/TV production in the United States indefinitely.
“I hope the studio will see and understand our members’ resolve,” he said. “The ball is in their court. If they want to avoid the strike, they will return to the bargaining table and give us a fair offer.”
“A deal can be done at the bargaining table,” AMPTP said in a statement on Monday. “But it will require both sides to work together in good faith with a willingness to compromise and seek new solutions to address open issues.”
a source told Hollywood Reporter Negotiations may resume on October 5th and AMPTP is reportedly ready to make a new offer. IATSE asking non-union members to sign petition in support of the union’s efforts