SAG-AFTRA has reached a tentative agreement with the ad industry for a new commercials contract. The new pact, which the union called a “landmark deal,” must now be approved by its board of directors. The old contract generated more than $1 billion a year for the union’s members.
Specific retails of the new pact were not released in advance of the board’s review, but the guild said that its members working in commercials “will see across-the-board wage increases for all categories of work; increases to the benefit plans; coverage of stunt coordinators; outsized gains to group dancers; protections against workplace sexual harassment; and streamlined processes for commercial agents representing SAG-AFTRA members.”
The new agreement also introduces “an innovative and flexible alternative compensation model that specifically addresses the realities of the modern advertising business while preserving and enhancing opportunities for actors to have a professional career,” the union said.
The two sides over the weekend extended their negotiations on a new contract which had been set to expire Sunday. That extension was set to expire tonight at midnight PT.
“This agreement represents a real step forward for actors in this space,” said SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris, who served as chair of the union’s negotiating committee. “It modernizes the commercials contracts making them more relevant to the industry now and into the future. It is a monumental advancement in growing our jurisdiction. We are proud to have helped create this important benchmark that clearly speaks to the needs of the membership and the evolution of our industry.”
David White, the union’s national executive director and chief negotiator, praised Carteris and the negotiating committee for working “relentlessly to design real solutions to the challenges facing the advertising industry.”
Stacy Marcus, the chief negotiator for the advertisers and ad agencies, said that “The members of our respective committees worked cooperatively to address the serious needs of both the industry and the SAG-AFTRA membership. The result of that hard work and committed partnership is a landmark agreement that protects industry and member interests, while creating a structure that will also grow the opportunities for years to come. Both the industry and SAG-AFTRA should be proud of their collective accomplishment.”
Negotiations for a new pact replacing one agreed to in 2016 began on February 20, but unlike the ongoing talks between the WGA and the Association of Talent Agents – which have been played out in public for months — the SAG-AFTRA negotiations have been conducted completely in secret.