WGAE – Great Victory at Atlas

Posted: November 25th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: WGA | Tags: | Comments Off on WGAE – Great Victory at Atlas

Great Victory at Atlas

The campaign to raise standards in non-fiction TV won its first major victory this month.   
As you’ve probably heard, the writer/producers at Atlas voted by an overwhelming majority to join the Writers Guild! The Atlas election was the first time ever that the WGAE has participated in a National Labor Relations Board election to represent writers in non-fiction. Atlas producers did an amazing job of staying united and voting yes. This victory sets the pace for the movement to win improvements for all writers and producers working in non-fiction across the East coast.  

Our Campaign’s Anniversary

One year ago, writers and producers of non-fiction TV from across NYC met and set a plan to raise standards in their industry. After many years of working long hours with little or no benefits, writers and producers decided it was time to come together and organize. After dozens of meetings and conversations, we are now well on our way to winning the right to collective bargaining at several companies. In just one year, you have built a citywide network across dozens of companies.  

More Upcoming Elections

In the next few weeks, writer/producers at ITV, Optomen and Sharp will all have the opportunity to vote to begin collective bargaining. If you are eligible to vote in one of those elections you have probably heard from us already. We are still in negotiations with Lion TV and we hope to have an update on voting dates soon.   If you are not voting in one of these elections, you can help by passing on words of support and encouragement to any friends or colleagues you know who may be working there. They are likely to be under significant pressure from their bosses to vote against unionizing.   

Campaign to get Employers to Obey the Law

We are also launching a campaign that will initially be focused on True Entertainment and Original Media (both subsidiaries of media giant Endemol). In this campaign, we will alert the government’s appropriate enforcement agencies of the many violations of labor law that have been reported to us by employees of both companies. From blatant violations of overtime rules to interfering with fair election proceedings, we will be aggressively pursuing a strategy to get these companies to obey the law.

Next Steps

Having union elections at these locations and creating a network of several hundred supporters in just one year is truly remarkable progress. But we can’t stop here. Writers and producers across the entire industry are determined to win the basic benefits that they deserve. We have heard from people in many more companies and we expect to be engaged in campaigns in many more locations next year.  

Our website has lots of new information about the movement to raise standards. Check it out for updates.


BLACK SWAN

Posted: November 19th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: PGA, WGA | Tags: , , | Comments Off on BLACK SWAN

The PGA East Screening Committee Pre-Release Screening + Q&A of…

Fox Searchlight Pictures Presents

BLACK SWAN

Friday, November 19 at 7:00pm

Followed by a conversation with Producer SCOTT FRANKLIN, Director DARREN ARONOFSKY, Screenwriter MARK HEYMAN and Actors NATALIE PORTMAN and MILA KUNIS

DGA Theater
110 West 57th St.
Btwn 6th & 7th Ave.

Producers: Mike Medavoy*, Arnold W. Messer, Brian Oliver, Scott Franklin*
Director: Darren Aronofsky
Screenplay by: Mark Heyman and Andres Heinz & John McLaughlin
Starring: Natalie Portman, Vincent Cassel, Mila Kunis, Barbara Hershey and Winona Ryder
*PGA Member

A psychological thriller set in the world of New York City ballet, BLACK SWAN stars Natalie Portman as Nina, a featured dancer who finds herself locked in a web of competitive intrigue with a new rival at the company (Mila Kunis). A Fox Searchlight Pictures release by visionary director Darren Aronofsky (THE WRESTLER), BLACK SWAN takes a thrilling and at times terrifying journey through the psyche of a young ballerina whose starring role as the Swan Queen turns out to be a part for which she becomes frighteningly perfect.

Running Time: 103 Minutes
Release Date: December 3, 2010
Rated R for strong sexual content, disturbing violent images, language, and some drug use

As a courtesy to Mr. Franklin, Mr. Aronofsky, Mr. Heyman, Ms. Portman and Ms. Kunis, please do not RSVP unless you intend to stay for the entire Q&A.

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THE POWER OF DIVERSITY

Posted: March 12th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: PGA, WGA | Tags: , , | Comments Off on THE POWER OF DIVERSITY

THE POWER OF DIVERSITY

2010 Producers Guild of America Workshop

The Producers Guild of America is proud to announce its producing workshop, “THE POWER OF DIVERSITY.” This workshop will draw upon a wide range of seminars and perspectives designed to foster the development of diverse voices in Television Comedy, One Hour Drama, Reality Television Motion Pictures, Documentaries and Web series.

Up to ten (10) participants will be encouraged to explore, create and refine creative visions and stories that reflect our diverse culture. Applicants may be emerging creative voices or those well-established in their careers.

This year’s program will focus on participants’ projects helping them move their work forward through seminars and master classes with some of the top professionals working in film, television, and non-traditional media supported by one-on-one mentoring work with a member of the Producers Guild. Topics to be addressed include: story development, pitching, packaging, financing, marketing, and new media. Every session will be tailored to our participating producers and their projects.

Workshop call for entries is now open and closes on April 9th 2010 at 5:00 pm.

  • Applicants will be notified by May 14th, 2010
  • Workshop sessions will take place between May 24th and July 31st. If selected, participants must be available to attend the duration of the program.
  • Workshop sessions typically will be held weekday evenings from approximately 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. with a few sessions on Saturday mornings at The Producers Guild of America offices at 8530 Wilshire Blvd., Ste 450, Beverly Hills.

Past workshop speakers have included, Marshall Herskovitz (Defiance, Blood Diamond, The Last Samurai) Damon Lindelof (Lost, Star Trek), Mark Gordon (Grey’s Anatomy, Saving Private Ryan, 2012) Bruce Cohen (Pushing Daisies, Milk, American Beauty) in addition to others.

Only one application/project per applicant please. Applicants must apply by mail only. No faxes or drop-offs will be accepted. To apply please submit:

  • Application can be downloaded at www.pgadiversity.org.
  • Signed release form can also be downloaded at www.pgadiversity.org.
  • 2 page treatment of project (TV Comedy, One Hour Drama, Motion Picture, Documentary, Web Series); or detailed 1-2 page plan of execution (Reality Television Series). In addition to summarizing the project, the submission must demonstrate an engagement with issues of diversity.
  • A current resume.
  • A non-refundable $35 application fee made out to Producers Guild of America
  • A one page artist’s statement as to why he/she wants to participate in the workshop and what benefits the producer foresees for participation.

Participants will be chosen on a two step process. First step: application. Second step: interview

Producers will be notified if they have moved forward to interview phase by April 30th. Final workshop participants will be notified by May 12th.

Send four (4) copies of all materials to: PGA Producing Workshop
Producers Guild of America
8530 Wilshire Blvd. Ste 450
Beverly Hills, CA 90211

The PGA Workshop is offered at no charge: A good idea and passion are the only requirements for admission.

All projects must be registered with the Writers Guild of America prior to submission.


COMMUNITY HELP FOR HAITI

Posted: January 22nd, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Disasters, Entertainment, PGA, SAG, WGA | Tags: , | Comments Off on COMMUNITY HELP FOR HAITI

Dear PGA East,

A message on how producers can actively assist with Haiti relief – REACH OUT TO YOUR VENDORS:

A group of us are working with filmmaker Jonathan Demme in an effort to organize a shipment of donated generators, lighting equipment, and other supplies to aid in the recovery in Haiti.

We have been in touch with contacts at the Cine Institute in Jacmel. The city of Jacmel on the Southern coast of Haiti is in dire need of relief. Almost all medical supplies and attention have been directed to Port Au Prince. The road between Port Au Prince and Jacmel is closed. The toll of Jacmel homeless and refugees has risen to 80,000 according to the latest local government evaluation.

THE PORT IN JACMEL IS OPEN. We are coordinating with the Afya Foundation, who has arranged shipping for us and is filling half of a 40′ container with prioritized humanitarian relief items. Partners in Health is funding shipment to the Jacmel port.

Our goal is to fill the other 20′ of the container (or would be great to fill it with more) with equipment, donated by NY film production crew members and rental houses. We are seeking portable 3,000 to 6,500 watt generators (putt-putts). Additionally – parcans, tungsten balloons, open face fixtures, stands, work lights, spare bulbs, power tools, cable distribution, tents, shovels, and wheelbarrows. And if possible – cameras, tape stock, and editing equipment. Anything we can donate would be helpful.

Luna Lighting/Broadway Stages here in Brooklyn has generously offered to be a drop point for all donated gear – to be received no later that this Friday AM. The drop off address is 282 Calyer Street, Brooklyn NY 11222.

Please call if you have any questions.

Thank you.
Dawn Dianda
Broadway Stages/Luna Lighting
203 Meserole Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11222
718-349-9146

For more information on how to contribute to Haiti disaster relief, you can refer to suggestions made by The New York Times:

http://thelede.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/01/13/haiti-disaster-relief-how-to-contribute


Writers Strike Effect on TV Network Revenue

Posted: April 1st, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Entertainment, NATAS, Television, WGA | Tags: , , , | 3 Comments »

Over on Silicon Alley Insider, they have broken down the numbers and the effect of the WGA strike on the networks. This is based on data from TargetCast. Overall, the cost of a primetime spot was 12% less then a year ago. We already know that the broadcast business had a severe drop in viewership and ratings just sucked, with some fairly large drops, especially over at NBC.

Here is the breakdown of the first quarter of 2008 and the average cost of a 30 second primetime ad.

  • NBC (GE): $77,893, down 24.7%
  • CBS (CBS): $112,641, down 11.9%
  • ABC (DIS): $122,509, down 9.5%
  • Fox (NWS): $237,237, down 9.2%

Sir Arthur C. Clarke, RIP

Posted: March 19th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Entertainment, Films, Music, WGA | Tags: | Comments Off on Sir Arthur C. Clarke, RIP

The first film I remember seeing was 2001 – A Space Odyssey based on the story by Arthur C. Clarke and directed by Stanley Kubrick. My dad took me to see it in CinemaScope (sort of like IMAX today) and it had a profound effect on my young mind. To this day, my favorite film sequence is the Space Waltz docking of the Pan Am Clipper and the Torus Space Station beautifully set to Johann Strauss II, An der schönen blauen Donau.

Over the years I have read many of Sir Clarke’s books, stories and articles. It always impressed me how much of a visionary he was, and often how correct his stories and predictions were when that future he wrote about became part of our reality.


The Strike Is OVER!

Posted: February 13th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Entertainment, PGA, WGA | Tags: | Comments Off on The Strike Is OVER!

It’s official – the WGA strike is now over! Let’s get back to work. BTW, the SAG contracts are up for renewal in June.