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‘The Wire’ Creator David Simon Rips “Greedhead” Agencies Over Packaging, Urges Lawsuit Against ATA

David Simon

Note: David Simon is the former newspaperman turned TV writer/producer and show creator whose TV work includes Homicide: Life On The Street, The Wire, Treme and The Deuce. He wrote a post on his personal blog The Audacity Of Despair that grasps the conflict of interest charges leveled by writers against agencies in a personal and succinct way that is unlike anything we’ve seen before on the subject. Deadline is re-posting Simon’s post in its entirety, even as it is being… Read

breakingBusiness

WGA Sets New Dates For Vote On Agency Code Of Conduct

WGA ATA

The WGA has taken another step toward asking its members to fire their agents en masse if the guild doesn't reach an agreement with the Association of Talent Agents for a new franchise agreement by April 6. In a message to members today, leaders of the WGA West and East said that their board and council have voted unanimously to request membership approval of a resolution "to authorize the board and council to implement an Agency Code of Conduct, if and when it becomes… Read

breakingBusiness

ATA Sees “Dark Cloud” Hanging Over Hollywood As Day 5 Of WGA Talks Concludes

WGA ATA

The WGA and the Association of Talent Agents have concluded their fifth day of bargaining for a new franchise agreement, with the ATA saying there’s a “dark cloud of uncertainty” hanging over Hollywood as the two sides again made little progress toward resolving the two key issues: the guild's demands that the agencies stop collecting packaging fees and sever their ties with affiliated production entities. If no deal is reached by April 6, when their current agreement… Read

breakingBusiness

ATA Report: Ending Packaging Fees Would Cost Writers Nearly $50 Million A Year In Added Commissions

In defense of packaging deals, the Association of Talent Agents on Monday released a report that claims writers would have had to pay at least $49 million more in commissions during the 2017-2018 TV season if their projects had not been packaged, because under the current system writers don't pay agents their 10% commissions on packaged deals. According to the report, ending packaging fees would have cost writers, actors, directors and producers combined at least $111… Read

breakingBusiness

WGA Report: Private Equity “Upending” Agencies’ Duty To Writers

WGA

A new WGA report, titled "Agencies For Sale," claims that $3 billion in private equity investments in WME and CAA "is upending Hollywood talent representation" and "threatens to overwhelm the major agencies' core purpose as agents – to represent their clients." The guild released the report just hours before it's set to resume negotiations with the Association of Talent Agents for a new franchise agreement. "This report examines the investments made into the largest… Read

exclusiveBusiness

Chantal Cousineau Hasn’t Worked Since Leading #MeToo Charge Against James Toback

Chantal Cousineau, one of the leaders of the #MeToo Movement, says she hasn't had a single day of work as an actress since she became the first of hundreds of women to accuse director James Toback of sexual harassment and assault back in October 2017, shortly after the Harvey Weinstein scandal broke. "I haven't worked since I came forward, and I used to shoot up to 10 commercials a year," she said on a recent podcast with SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris and… Read

exclusiveBusiness

One ATA Agency Breaks Ranks & Signs WGA’s Proposed Code Of Conduct – Update

WGA ATA

UPDATED with new information: The WGA's efforts to "divide and conquer" the talent agencies by forcing them to sign its new Code of Conduct isn't gaining much traction with the Association of Talent Agents. Of the ATA’s 113 member-agencies, only one has signed its new code, according to the guild. That agency, Deadline has learned, is the Pantheon Talent Agency, founded in 2006 and based in Century City. "There are 24 agencies signed so far, most of them small, one of… Read

breakingBusiness

No Progress In WGA Talks With ATA As Guild’s Latest Offer Deemed “Lipstick On A Pig”; Read Both Sides’ Statements – Update

WGA ATA

UPDATED with post-talks statement by ATA executive director and opening statement by WGA West president: The WGA and the Association of Talent Agents met today for the second time this week to hammer out a new franchise agreement ahead of the April 6 deadline for a deal. Little progress was made, but the two sides agreed to return to the bargaining table on Monday. "The WGA presented a counter-proposal that they knew wasn't acceptable," an agency source told Deadline. "It… Read

Business

Musicians Want Streaming Residuals As Contract Talks Start With AMPTP

American Federation of Musicians

Bargaining began Wednesday for a new contract between the American Federation of Musicians and management’s Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. The chief issue is residuals from films made for steaming services, which musicians don't get. "As new media consumption has grown, studios have agreed to pay streaming residuals for actors, writers, directors and others when films are made for streaming, but musicians have been uniquely excluded," the union said… Read

Business

Gimlet Media Unionizes With WGA East In A First For Podcasting Industry

Gimlet Media has become the first podcasting company to unionize with the WGA East. A majority of it 83 employees has agreed to sign union cards and called on management to recognize the guild as its collective bargaining rep. Brooklyn-based Gimlet’s network includes Reply All, Crimetown, The Cut, The Nod, Homecoming and Every Little Thing, and the company says its podcast are downloaded 12 million times a month. Its listener base spans more than 180… Read

breakingBusiness

WGA And ATA To Resume Talks Thursday After Agents Offer Deal – Update

WGA ATA

UPDATED with talks ending for day, new talks scheduled: The WGA and the Association of Talent Agents have scheduled another meeting for Thursday after concluding negotiations today, the first meeting between the two sides since February 19. The talks come in advance of the April 6 expiration of their current franchise agreement. The ATA today offered a deal to the WGA that would increase transparency in agency dealings with writers but would not eliminate packaging fees… Read

breakingBusiness

WGA Report Calls Big Agencies A “Cartel” As Talks Resume With ATA

WGA ATA

Just hours before resuming negotiations with the Association of Talent Agents for a new franchise agreement, the WGA released a 16-page report this morning that accuses the major agencies of running a vertically integrated "cartel" that has cornered the market on Hollywood's talent. The Writers Guild and agencies will return to the bargaining table at 3:30 p.m. today for the first time since February 19, with a deadline for a deal set for April 6. If a deal isn’t reached… Read