SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris spoke at a 400-person rally in Los Angeles today meant to draw attention to the union’s ongoing 105-day strike against certain video game companies.
The crowd included actors as well as representatives from the Writers Guild, Directors Guild, Teamsters and Musicians Union.
“We are fighting for a fair contract….It’s a righteous cause” Carteris told the crowd.
Though union members said they were more than willing to sit and negotiate as soon as possible if the companies would come up with new and better terms for the performers, a representative for the video game companies seemed reluctant to bargain.
Scott Witlin, the companies’ chief negotiator, told “Deadline” that, “We (the companies) remain disappointed that SAG-AFTRA leadership remains focused on outmoded ideas about how compensation is structured rather than the real dollars and cents that the video game companies put on the table. Indeed, we offered more money than SAG-AFTRA demanded in an attempt to avoid this strike.”
The problem seems to be with residuals, or the lack thereof that performers in video games make. Residuals for actors are pretty standard with most union jobs in Hollywood, but video games have for a long time avoided such clauses.
The strike’s primary goals are secondary compensation, transparency and stunt safety provisions; union members point out that other video game companies have agreed to these measures, meaning that what they are requesting is not unreasonable.