In Depth

WGA Strike Roundup: Thursday, Jan. 31

WGA Cancels Meeting With CBS Investors
Writers Guild of America leaders called off a New York meeting with CBS investors and analysts next week designed to encourage them to pressure CBS President Leslie Moonves to agree to WGA terms, the Los Angeles Times reported. The meeting, designed to inform analysts and investors how much the strike is hurting the company, angered some executives whose studios are involved in WGA discussions, the newspaper said. Neither the WGA nor CBS would comment on why the meeting was canceled, the newspaper reported.

Oscar Producers Plan Contingency Show
Academy Awards producers are planning a contingency show to take place in the event that the Writers Guild of America strike is still in effect during the Feb. 24 broadcast, the Associated Press reported, citing Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences President Sid Ganis. The show, one which “we would prefer not to do,” would include more film clips, history and other “out-of-the-ordinary concepts,” the wire service said, citing Ganis.

Lowest-Earning Writers May Lose Health Coverage in April
About 250 of the lowest-earning writers, or about 5% of Writers Guild of America members covered by its health plan, are slated to lose their benefits in April because their earnings, hurt by the strike, fall below the required threshold for retaining insurance coverage, Daily Variety reported. Contrary to a statement made by WGA West President Patric Verrone at a November membership meeting, writers aren’t guaranteed health coverage through the duration of the strike, the newspaper said.

Robinson Says Directors’ Pact Shouldn’t Be a WGA Model
Phil Alden Robinson, writer and director of “Field of Dreams" and a WGA West governing board member, said an agreement similar to that of the Directors Guild of America wouldn’t work for writers, the New York Times reported. Robinson said many provisions, including one involving residual payments for television shows streamed over the Internet, wouldn’t be sufficient for the WGA, the newspaper said.

Haggis’ UA Deal Clears Him to Work During Strike
Academy Award-winning screenwriter and television show creator Paul Haggis, along with producing partner Michael Nozik, will create projects for United Artists, clearing the way for them to work during the Writers Guild of America strike because of a recent UA agreement with the WGA, Daily Variety reported. Haggis, who won a 2006 Oscar for the screenplay of "Crash," also created TV shows such as CBS’ “EZ Streets,” the newspaper said.

—Danny King