More than 1,500 WGA screenwriters, showrunners and TV and streaming writers have signed a pledge…saying they’re “committed to fighting for WGA coverage for all animation projects we create, write or produce moving forward. We want to be treated equal to live-action writers, not less than.” Signers include J.J. Abrams, Seth MacFarlane, Chuck Lorre, Amy Poehler and Mike Schur. See the full list below.
To that end, the WGA West’s board of directors has created an Animation Writers Organizing Committee, made up of established animation writers in screen, television and streaming. Co-chaired by Mike Scully, former showrunner for The Simpsons and former WGA West presidents David A. Goodman and Patric Verrone, the committee says it “stands ready to work with any animation writer committed to getting a Guild contract for their project or writing staff.”
“Whether writing for live action or animation, WGA members deserve a WGA deal,” the AWOC said in a communique to the guild’s members on Monday. “Unlike live action, however, Guild coverage for animation is not guaranteed by the Minimum Basic Agreement, so writers must demand it. Over the years, writers have successfully fought for and won coverage for numerous animation projects.
“Increasingly, however, some studios and production companies are insisting that WGA coverage is a ‘non-starter’ – even for WGA members – and force them to work under another union’s contract, where they receive less money, inferior health and pension benefits, and no residuals. For writers who have previously worked on Guild-covered animated shows, this is an extreme rollback.”
That other union is The Animation Guild, IATSE Local 839.
“A WGA contract ensures that writers receive residuals, higher compensation, and essential health and pension benefits including paid parental leave,” the pledge says. “We, along with our fellow writers, must have the protections and security that come with WGA coverage.”
See the pledge and the signers here.
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.