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Screen Actors Guild and AMPTP begin contract negotiation talks

UPI News Service, 04/15/2008 

Hollywood's Screen Actors Guild and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers began negotiations for a new contract Tuesday.

The AMPTP and SAG released a joint statement confirming they held a full day of meetings Tuesday and exchanged proposals. They are scheduled to meet again Wednesday.

The parties are working toward reaching a new collective bargaining pact before their current agreement expires June 30 to avoid a work stoppage such as the recent Writers Guild of America strike, which lasted more than three months.

Former SAG General Counsel David White said an actors strike -- should there be one --could cripple the U.S. entertainment industry.

"No question about it, such a strike would be devastating, particularly on the heels of the 100-day WGA strike. People are only getting back on their feet now by paying off credit card and home equity debt they used to get through the first work stoppage. Even if some film has been stockpiled by then, SAG can basically shut down new production, which means no work for many people," White said in a statement.

White is now a partner at the consulting firm Entertainment Strategies Group LLC.

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Copyright 2008 by United Press International

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