Nov 27, 2020
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SAG’s Doug Allen out as negotiator

A badly split SAG national board has removed national exec director Doug Allen as the guild’s lead negotiator.

The ouster, which occurred Monday afternoon at an emergency meeting of SAG’s national board, is a clear signal that SAG’s leaders will cancel the guild’s divisive strike authorization vote shortly. The move could also could jumpstart SAG’s long-stalled contract negotiations with the majors.

It’s unclear whether Allen will stay on for the final year of his contract or who will replace him as chief negotiator.

SAG had no comment about the move, which came during a lengthy closed-door session on the first day of the board’s two-day confab. People close to the situation said Allen left the boardroom following the vote, which saw about 55% of the 71-member board supporting the ouster.

The removal of Allen was not a surprise. Leaders of SAG’s moderate wing — which gained a narrow majority in the fall over the more aggressive Membership First faction — have become increasingly frustrated over Allen continuing to insist on pushing for a strike authorization along with his failure to reach a deal with the congloms on SAG’s feature-primetime contract.

The internal battle has heated up since SAG’s attempt to re-start negotiations cratered on Nov. 22 when the guild’s negotiating committee insisted on an increase in DVD residuals — long a non-starter for the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers. And the opposition to a strike authorization crystalized with high-profile members such as George Clooney and Tom Hanks opposing the idea of threatening a strike amid the worsening national economy.

Nearly 2,000 members have endorsed voting no on the authorization while 4,000 have come out in favor.

People close to the situation said that the board is also considering replacing SAG’s negotiating committee with a task force that more closely mirrors the makeup of the 71-member national board.

SAG’s negotiating committee, which has been in a stalemate with studios since spring over its primetime-feature master contract, remains dominated by Membership First. Monday’s meeting included a motion to change the guidelines for the composition of SAG task forces to remove requirements that such bodies reflect the proportion of earnings under a contract.

The once-delayed authorization vote would have to receive 75% support among members casting ballots for the guild to strike. Allen has insisted repeatedly that SAG needs the authorization in order to persuade the congloms to sweeten their six-month-old final offer — despite repeated assertions by the companies that they won’t alter the proposal.

Allen was hired in October 2006 after two decades in the No. 2 slot at the NFL Players Assn. and has a year left on his contract at a salary of about $500,000.

The moderate members — mostly those repping New York and the regional branches — have also been perturbed over the requirement that they attend in person rather than holding the meeting using videoconferencing equipment and have accused Allen and SAG president Alan Rosenberg of trying to hold down attendance by those opposed to their policies.

About two dozen demonstrators rallied and leafleted outside SAG headquarters prior to the meeting, mostly on the side of supporting the authorization. The demonstrators included former SAG presidents Ed Asner and William Daniels.

Longtime SAG activist Tom Bower passed out leaflets of his message asserting that the congloms’ six-month-old proposal would lead to the elimination of residuals — an assertion strongly disputed by the AMPTP. “That’s been their plan all along, ever since they began negotiations with the writers in July 2007,” he added.

Neil Hassman, a manager with two dozen actor clients, attended the demonstration with a “No SAG Strike” sign. “SAG’s been unrealistic about trying to seek a better deal than the other unions and it’s having a devastating impact,” he said.

Source: Variety

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Headline, Industry News

SAG’s Doug Allen out as negotiator

A badly split SAG national board has removed national exec director Doug Allen as the guild’s lead negotiator.

The ouster, which occurred Monday afternoon at an emergency meeting of SAG’s national board, is a clear signal that SAG’s leaders will cancel the guild’s divisive strike authorization vote shortly. The move could also could jumpstart SAG’s long-stalled contract negotiations with the majors.

It’s unclear whether Allen will stay on for the final year of his contract or who will replace him as chief negotiator.

SAG had no comment about the move, which came during a lengthy closed-door session on the first day of the board’s two-day confab. People close to the situation said Allen left the boardroom following the vote, which saw about 55% of the 71-member board supporting the ouster.

The removal of Allen was not a surprise. Leaders of SAG’s moderate wing — which gained a narrow majority in the fall over the more aggressive Membership First faction — have become increasingly frustrated over Allen continuing to insist on pushing for a strike authorization along with his failure to reach a deal with the congloms on SAG’s feature-primetime contract.

The internal battle has heated up since SAG’s attempt to re-start negotiations cratered on Nov. 22 when the guild’s negotiating committee insisted on an increase in DVD residuals — long a non-starter for the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers. And the opposition to a strike authorization crystalized with high-profile members such as George Clooney and Tom Hanks opposing the idea of threatening a strike amid the worsening national economy.

Nearly 2,000 members have endorsed voting no on the authorization while 4,000 have come out in favor.

People close to the situation said that the board is also considering replacing SAG’s negotiating committee with a task force that more closely mirrors the makeup of the 71-member national board.

SAG’s negotiating committee, which has been in a stalemate with studios since spring over its primetime-feature master contract, remains dominated by Membership First. Monday’s meeting included a motion to change the guidelines for the composition of SAG task forces to remove requirements that such bodies reflect the proportion of earnings under a contract.

The once-delayed authorization vote would have to receive 75% support among members casting ballots for the guild to strike. Allen has insisted repeatedly that SAG needs the authorization in order to persuade the congloms to sweeten their six-month-old final offer — despite repeated assertions by the companies that they won’t alter the proposal.

Allen was hired in October 2006 after two decades in the No. 2 slot at the NFL Players Assn. and has a year left on his contract at a salary of about $500,000.

The moderate members — mostly those repping New York and the regional branches — have also been perturbed over the requirement that they attend in person rather than holding the meeting using videoconferencing equipment and have accused Allen and SAG president Alan Rosenberg of trying to hold down attendance by those opposed to their policies.

About two dozen demonstrators rallied and leafleted outside SAG headquarters prior to the meeting, mostly on the side of supporting the authorization. The demonstrators included former SAG presidents Ed Asner and William Daniels.

Longtime SAG activist Tom Bower passed out leaflets of his message asserting that the congloms’ six-month-old proposal would lead to the elimination of residuals — an assertion strongly disputed by the AMPTP. “That’s been their plan all along, ever since they began negotiations with the writers in July 2007,” he added.

Neil Hassman, a manager with two dozen actor clients, attended the demonstration with a “No SAG Strike” sign. “SAG’s been unrealistic about trying to seek a better deal than the other unions and it’s having a devastating impact,” he said.

Source: Variety

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Headline, Industry News

SAG’s Doug Allen out as negotiator

A badly split SAG national board has removed national exec director Doug Allen as the guild’s lead negotiator.

The ouster, which occurred Monday afternoon at an emergency meeting of SAG’s national board, is a clear signal that SAG’s leaders will cancel the guild’s divisive strike authorization vote shortly. The move could also could jumpstart SAG’s long-stalled contract negotiations with the majors.

It’s unclear whether Allen will stay on for the final year of his contract or who will replace him as chief negotiator.

SAG had no comment about the move, which came during a lengthy closed-door session on the first day of the board’s two-day confab. People close to the situation said Allen left the boardroom following the vote, which saw about 55% of the 71-member board supporting the ouster.

The removal of Allen was not a surprise. Leaders of SAG’s moderate wing — which gained a narrow majority in the fall over the more aggressive Membership First faction — have become increasingly frustrated over Allen continuing to insist on pushing for a strike authorization along with his failure to reach a deal with the congloms on SAG’s feature-primetime contract.

The internal battle has heated up since SAG’s attempt to re-start negotiations cratered on Nov. 22 when the guild’s negotiating committee insisted on an increase in DVD residuals — long a non-starter for the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers. And the opposition to a strike authorization crystalized with high-profile members such as George Clooney and Tom Hanks opposing the idea of threatening a strike amid the worsening national economy.

Nearly 2,000 members have endorsed voting no on the authorization while 4,000 have come out in favor.

People close to the situation said that the board is also considering replacing SAG’s negotiating committee with a task force that more closely mirrors the makeup of the 71-member national board.

SAG’s negotiating committee, which has been in a stalemate with studios since spring over its primetime-feature master contract, remains dominated by Membership First. Monday’s meeting included a motion to change the guidelines for the composition of SAG task forces to remove requirements that such bodies reflect the proportion of earnings under a contract.

The once-delayed authorization vote would have to receive 75% support among members casting ballots for the guild to strike. Allen has insisted repeatedly that SAG needs the authorization in order to persuade the congloms to sweeten their six-month-old final offer — despite repeated assertions by the companies that they won’t alter the proposal.

Allen was hired in October 2006 after two decades in the No. 2 slot at the NFL Players Assn. and has a year left on his contract at a salary of about $500,000.

The moderate members — mostly those repping New York and the regional branches — have also been perturbed over the requirement that they attend in person rather than holding the meeting using videoconferencing equipment and have accused Allen and SAG president Alan Rosenberg of trying to hold down attendance by those opposed to their policies.

About two dozen demonstrators rallied and leafleted outside SAG headquarters prior to the meeting, mostly on the side of supporting the authorization. The demonstrators included former SAG presidents Ed Asner and William Daniels.

Longtime SAG activist Tom Bower passed out leaflets of his message asserting that the congloms’ six-month-old proposal would lead to the elimination of residuals — an assertion strongly disputed by the AMPTP. “That’s been their plan all along, ever since they began negotiations with the writers in July 2007,” he added.

Neil Hassman, a manager with two dozen actor clients, attended the demonstration with a “No SAG Strike” sign. “SAG’s been unrealistic about trying to seek a better deal than the other unions and it’s having a devastating impact,” he said.

Source: Variety

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Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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