WHAT: The Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW), the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, “Reality” TV workers, and industry supporters will unite in solidarity at a press conference tomorrow, Wednesday, July 16, to kick-off the American Idol Truth Tour to spotlight adverse working conditions in the “Reality” TV industry and call for FremantleMedia to adopt industry standard benefits for its employees.
A major television production company that produces highly rated American Idol, as well as other network primetime programs including America’s Got Talent (NBC), Million Dollar Password (CBS), and Farmer Wants A Wife (CW), FremantleMedia continues to profit from AI and its other hit shows, while writers and other behind-the-scenes workers often face substandard working conditions. FremantleMedia employees have charged the company with multiple labor law violations, including withholding overtime pay and failure to provide state-mandated meal or rest breaks, among other grievances. Currently, FremantleMedia workers do not receive industry-standard benefits guaranteed by a union contract, including pay minimums and health and pension benefits.The American Idol Truth Tour bus will depart from WGAW headquarters for San Francisco immediately following the L.A. press conference.
WHO: Speakers scheduled to appear include: WGAW Vice President David Weiss, Teamsters Local 399 President Tony Cousimano, former American Idol production assistant Justin Buckles, and “Reality” TV stars Dante (Last Comic Standing) and Megan Bobo (American Idol Season 5 contestant), as well as Jay London (Last Comic Standing), Ken Pringle (Yo Mamma), Gary Anthony Williams (Boston Legal), Kieren Van Der Blink (Numb3rs, Without A Trace), and Rebekah Kochan (Eating Out 1 & 2), and more to be announced getting on the Truth Tour bus.
WHEN: Wednesday, July 16, 2008, 10AM
WHERE: Writers Guild of America, West