The WGA West has unveiled its annual report, which shows the total number of member writers working in the industry fell compared with a year ago, as did total salaries.
The report, mailed to members last week and posted on the guild’s website today, showed that employment in all work areas combined was down 3.5% for fiscal-year 2016 that ended March 31, 2017. The WGAW touted that total earnings topped $1.2 billion for a third year in a row, but its reported $1.23 billion was down 3.1% from 2015.
TV writers earned $860.9 million during the span, down 1.7%, while film writers earned $359.8 million, down 6.4%. While the number of news, promotion, informational and interactive programming writers was off 3.1%, that group made $12.4 million, up 5.5%.
Read the full 29-page report here.
The guild reported total revenues for the fiscal year at $34.3 million, up from $30.7 million a year ago, and an operating surplus of $6.2 million. Expenditures of $28.1 million were higher than FY 2016’s total of $27.1 million, which the WGA said owed to fewer staff vacancies and expenditures related to preparation for renegotiating renegotiating the new film and TV contract.
Those negotiations faced several standoffs and a strike-authorization vote before a deal was reached in the early-morning hours of May 2 after the contract’s midnight expiration date.
WGA residuals fell 5.3%, according to the report — 7.5% in TV and 1% in film — which the guild attributed “to late delivery of checks at the year end, which moves those amounts into the 2017 accounting period.”