Writers, producers in last-minute talks

Nov. 4, 2007 at 9:29 PM
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LOS ANGELES, Nov. 4 (UPI) -- Hollywood writers were in last-minute talks with producers, networks and studios Sunday, aimed at averting a strike, Daily Variety reported.

Federal mediator Juan Carlos Gonzalez called the meeting, which Variety said started at 11 a.m. PST -- 13 hours before the Writers Guild of America was set to launch a strike.

The meeting, which continued for at least five hours, was called amid back-channel discussions focusing on possible concessions from labor and management that might avert a strike, Variety reported.

At the same time, The Los Angeles Times reported the WGA sent an e-mail to its members Sunday, reminding them that the guild "will go on strike" Monday at 12:01 a.m.

"As soon as the strike starts ... in your home time zone, all Guild-covered work ... must cease," the e-mail said.

Variety said key Hollywood player pushing Sunday to avert a strike included producer and former WGA President John Wells, as well as top studio executives Robert Iger (The Walt Disney Co.), Peter Chernin (Fox), Les Moonves (CBS) and Barry Meyer (Warner Bros.)

The WGA and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers are locked in a dispute on key issues such as writer compensation for work distributed on DVDs, the Internet, mobile phones and other new media.

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