EXCLUSIVE: Mobilizing for war with the major talent agencies, the WGA West today called on its members to participate in its “Agency Campaign” to reshape the agenting business. In a message sent to members Tuesday, the guild is seeking volunteers to serve as team captains to act “as a liaison between a team of writers and the guild by updating writers on campaign developments, communicating questions and concerns and mobilizing fellow writers in support of the strategy.”
“If you’re not on a team, and want to stay better informed as the Agency Campaign develops, we invite you to join a team or volunteer to be a team captain,” wrote Ann Farriday, the guild’s director of member organizing. She provided email addresses for those who want to either join a team or be a team captain. “We provide both resources and training,” she wrote.
The WGA has proposed a new Code of Conduct that would ban agents from packaging and involvement in production deals with related entities, both of which, the guild says, are “conflicts of interest” to agents’ fiduciary duties to their clients.
WGA members will vote on the proposed Code on March 25, and writers whose agents don’t sign it could be asked to fire their agents en masse on April 6 when the guild’s current franchise agreement with the Association of Talent Agents is set to expire. The guild said Monday that its negotiations with the ATA are now at an “impasse.”
None of the major agencies is expected to sign the code, which could set off a tsunami of TV writers, showrunners and executive producers seeking new representation among the pool of agents willing to accept the WGA’s terms.