The Writers Guild of America, East (WGAE) and the production company producing the VHi comedy series Best Week Ever with Paul F Tompkins show for VH1 signed contracts covering the series under the Guild’s Minimum Basic Agreement. All of the show’s writers will be WGAE members. Under the agreement, the scribes will see gains in their compensation and also receive pension benefits for the first time. The contract also provides Guild-sponsored medical benefits and residual payments. Best Week Ever’s annual special will also be covered under this contract.
“We were really gratified that we were able to use our re-launch as an opportunity to join the Guild,” said Cassie St. Onge, a writer/producer on the show, in the press release. “As a writer with a family, health and pension were always on my mind, but this contract is about more than just great benefits and fair compensation. It’s about belonging to this amazing professional community and getting some recognition for the work we do. It’s about sharing in the growing success of our show.”
“We’re excited to welcome these writers into our Guild and happy they will now be able to work under the same union protections and benefits as others in the New York comedy/variety community,” said WGAE Executive Director Lowell Peterson. “Despite a challenging economic climate, this new contract demonstrates that it is possible for companies to give writers the protections they deserve and also to be successful. VH-1 wanted to do the right thing for its writers, even within a limited budget. We are expanding our organizing efforts, and hope Best Week Ever is the first of many more new contracts in the near future.”