What an ignoble end to a once great union. It’s been two years since the Screen Actors Guild changed leaders. So membership should look to them for the current sad state of earnings, as shown by the just-released contract report comparing 2010 revenue to previous years. It’s no surprise to the small-screen community that SAG’s TV earnings plunged -8.2% overall in 2010 compared to 2009 since the current SAG leadership did nothing the past two years to stop the TV studios and networks from using any excuse to transition from SAG to AFTRA on pilots and new shows. (Incredibly SAG leaders never uttered a peep to membership when AFTRA in 2010 dominated the broadcast development season by seizing about 90% of the pilots.) It’s also shocking that Interactive earnings dove -31% total, demonstrating that SAG has been woefully inadequate in this expanding biz. Also disastrous was the -21% loss of revenue for background actors in both the theatrical and TV sectors. Overall theatrical for actors went up +5.7% (attributable mainly to recovery from the writers strike) and overall commercial rose +12.7% (attributable to bigger paydays negotiated because of the 2000 commercial strike). With an election coming up, SAG membership would do well to question current SAG leaders and ask if they allowed this to happen in order to ensure a merger with AFTRA. Here’s the chart:
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