Writers Strike News Roundup: Wed., Dec. 26
European Television Worries Over U.S. TV Shortfall
European television executives are fretting about the slim season in store for them from the U.S. in 2008 due to the writers strike, Daily Variety reports.
U.S. dramas are big business for European channels, and a limited season has execs looking over contingency plans, such as buying stop-gap programming from outside the United States, the newspaper reports.
Letterman, WGA Still Without Deal
David Letterman’s production company, Worldwide Pants, is still without an interim deal with the Writers Guild of America. Both sides are keeping mum about their discussions on Friday, the Hollywood Reporter reports.
Letterman had planned to return to the airwaves in January, but nothing concrete had been laid out. The guild said negotiations with Worldwide Pants would continue sometime this week, the newspaper says.
Writers Send Christmas Plea to Execs
On Christmas Eve, 127 writers with pilots up in the air due to the writers strike e-mailed their plea to the executives they were working with to spur the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers and the Writers Guild of America back to the bargaining table, Deadline Hollywood Daily says.
Nearly 200 network executives received the e-mail, which was sent with the blessing of the WGA, but not through the WGA, the blog said.
Katzenberg Effort Fails to Restart Talks
A back-channel effort from Jeffrey Katzenberg, CEO of DreamWorks Animation, to return the Writers Guild of America and the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers has failed, painting a grim outlook for the future of negotiations, Deadline Hollywood Daily reports.
The blog reports that producers remain steadfast in trying to punish writers into submission, already viewing this season as well as next as written off.
In order to stem spending, the studios are looking to rework their pilot setups as well as their upfront proposals, the blog says.