Wait a sec. While I was out this afternoon, the DGA actually agreed with the WGA on something important? (But only because it’s in the directors’ self-interest.) Today the Directors Guild, never one to take a courageous position on anything, followed the WGA in expressing outrage over the Emmy broadcast changes that prevent live presentations of awards in the helming categories. The DGA, like the WGA, conbsiders it a breach of the agreement with the Academy Of Television Arts & Sciences. (The DGA letter shows how Joe Adalian never bothered to check with the Guild and just reports ATAS’ claims as gospel. Another sad example of stenography passed off as journalism.):

LOS ANGELES – The Directors Guild of America today sent a letter to the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences alerting the Academy to its objections to the proposed changes to the Emmy broadcast.

To: John Shaffner
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Academy of Television Arts & Sciences

Dear John:

After reviewing the DGA’s Agreement with the Television Academy, the DGA has concluded that the proposed change in presentation of Directing Awards in the Emmy broadcast is a material breach of our agreement that the traditional Directing Awards “will be telecast live as part of each Prime Time Emmy Awards telecast” and will be in parity with the Actors’ Awards. As a result, unless the Academy reconsiders the proposed change in presentation of Directing Awards, the Guild considers that it no longer is bound by its commitments to the Academy under that Agreement.

The DGA-Television Academy Agreement has for many years ensured that Directors would receive recognition for their role in the creative process of television production. The DGA regrets that the Television Academy has unilaterally initiated steps to diminish that recognition.

I note that in the past – including as recently as March of this year – the Academy has come to the Guild’s Directors Council with requests for modification of the presentation format, and the Council has worked with the Academy to find mutually acceptable solutions to the Academy’s concerns. The Academy did not consult with the Guild’s Directors Council with respect to the recently announced changes.

I also note that in an article by Josef Adalian published on ”TheWrap.com”, you are quoted as saying that “the directors are OK with [these changes]”. In light of my e-mail to Dixon Dern dated July 31, of which you were sent a copy, saying that “The DGA is analyzing the Academy’s approach to these Awards in light of our agreements and interests, and will advise you as to our position following the conclusion of our review”, either you were misquoted in the interview, or you were intentionally disregarding the interests of the Directors Guild as the institution representing (among others) Directors in the television industry.

Warren Adler
DGA Associate National Executive Director