Producers, showrunners, APs and other freelance employees at Jigsaw Productions, the producer behind such recent documentaries as Totally Under Control, The Crime of the Century and Generation Hustle, have voted to unionize with the Writers Guild of America, East.
The Jigsaw Organizing Committee broke the news on social media today, writing: “Our goal is to work with the WGAE to negotiate a contract with Jigsaw Productions that addresses our concerns about compensation, crediting, diversity, and creates a more sustainable, equitable work environment. We fundamentally believe in what Jigsaw represents as a global brand. It’s that very ethos of telling difficult truths that inspires us to organize and align Jigsaw towards an equitable future. We believe that Jigsaw can be the catalyst for long overdue industry-wide change in nonfiction storytelling.”
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The company’s nonfiction credits also include docuseries Dirty Money, Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room and Going Clear: Scientology & the Prison of Belief, the latter of which which won three Emmys in 2015. All of those, along with Totally Under Control and The Crime of the Century, were produced and/or directed by Oscar winner Alex Gibney.
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“The people who craft Jigsaw’s great programs want to build sustainable careers and a more equitable workplace,” said Lowell Peterson, Executive Director of the WGA East. “The Guild represents people doing this work at shops like Vox Entertainment, another nonfiction production company creating content for Netflix, and we have been able to secure contracts that reflect their professional concerns, in an industry known for long hours and difficult conditions.”
The union has requested voluntary recognition from management.
WGAE also has worked to unionize such outfits as Gimlet Media, The Ringer, WINS-AM, ABC News, Bustle Digital Group, CBS News, CBSN, Chalkbeat, Committee to Protect Journalists, Entercom, Fast Company, WNYW-TV, FT Specialist, Future Plc, Gizmodo Media Group, Hearst Magazines, HuffPost, The Intercept, Jewish Currents, MTV News, NowThis, Onion Inc., Refinery29, Salon, Slate, Talking Points Memo, Thirteen Productions, Thrillist, Vice, Vox Media and WBBM-TV.
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