Amid the ongoing strikes from the Writers Guild of America, which began on Tuesday at midnight and effectively shut down production on various television series, late night shows, and movies in Hollywood, many celebrities have shown their support, including Rob Lowe and his son John Owen.
On Tuesday, thousands of WGA union members went on strike after six weeks of contentious negotiations for a new contract, when their previous contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers expired.
In the wake of the ongoing strike, several stars such as Jay Leno – who brought out donuts to the picket line – Amanda Seyfried, Natasha Lyonne, Saturday Night Live writer Aidy Bryant (production of the live show has been canceled and reruns will air instead), and Wanda Sykes have spoken out in favor of the writers.
Rob and John – who currently star together on a new Netflix series, Unstable – joined the picket line this week, and appeared in photos walking together with fellow protestors, where John was seen holding a sign which read "Writers Guild of America on Strike!"
The 28-year-old later shared photos of the moment on his Instagram, writing: "My outfit for the #metgala was a huge hit," and: "Show your support for the WGA!!!!"
This WGA walkout is the first writer strike in Hollywood in over 15 years, the last having lasted 99 days, from November 2007 to February 2008.
It is rooted in a disagreement over how much writers are paid amid the rapid shift to, and growing industry of, streaming services, with union members claiming they are not making enough income anymore, especially from their residuals, which many have pointed out used to offer a sustainable wage in the time in between jobs.
"Driven in large part by the shift to streaming, writers are finding their work devalued in every part of the business. While company profits have remained high and spending on content has grown, writers are falling behind," read a statement from the WGA, adding: "The companies have used the transition to streaming to cut writer pay and separate writing from production, worsening working conditions for series writers at all levels."
Aside from seeking gains in their compensation and residuals, there is also a concern for the use of AI for writing, and the guild is hoping to establish a more elaborate policy for how their own writing is used as the basis for AI-generated work.
In the aftermath, late night television shows such as The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Kimmel Live! and The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon have all gone dark, airing reruns instead, and the upcoming Saturday Night Live episode, which was slated to see Pete Davidson return to studio 8H as a first-time host, has been canceled. Daytime television and other scripted series will most likely be impacted as well, with the halt on writing delaying production and ergo premieres, which are typically slated for the fall.
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