Hollywood writers have decided to put down their pens and power down their keyboards. Film and TV writers are prepared to go on strike Monday for the first time in 20 years.
Writers Guild of America board members voted unanimously Friday to begin the strike at 3:01 a.m. Eastern Standard Time unless studios offered a more profitable deal, essentially entitling them to a bigger cut from video sales and shows sold or streamed over the Web.
“The studios made it clear that they would rather shut down this town than reach a fair and reasonable deal,” said Patric Verrone, president of the Writers Guild of America West.
As a result, millions of TV viewers are expected to turn to the internet to fill their entertainment needs. The writer’s strike is expected to stop all TV production, except for reality shows, and force TV networks to air nothing but reruns.
But viewers can expect their favourite scripted comedies and dramas to continue at least through the November sweeps.
Beyond that, quiz and game shows, as well as reality series, will dominate, since they don’t require union writers.
It will be business as usual for news programs, since their writers are not part of the Guild.