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Tuesday, 8 May, 2001, 10:25 GMT 11:25 UK
Actors set strike talks date
WGA negotiators
Writers' negotiators announcing their 4 May agreement
Representatives of Hollywood actors and studios will meet next week to begin long-awaited talks which they hope will avert a crippling strike.

Negotiations between the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers (AMPTP) will begin on 15 May.

Originally scheduled for 10 May, the new date for talks gives the parties less than seven weeks to avert a strike when their existing contract expires on 30 June.


The producers are capable of meeting the needs of talent

Barry Liden, Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers
Actors are concerned about earnings from selling films and TV shows abroad, as well as the use of their work on new media such as the internet.

An AMPTP spokesman said the studios were "encouraged" by their recent agreement with writers, and hoped that the SAG talks would also end in agreement.

On Tuesday the Writers Guild of America's board and council will discuss a settlement reached last week in their dispute with the AMPTP.

It is expected that the agreement will be approved by a majority vote.

Both writers and actors share similar concerns, and the Writers' Guild secured a concession which provides for writers to be paid for work distributed on the internet.

Actors are likely to want a similar concession for interactive "video on demand" services, which are planned by many Hollywood studios.

SAG president William Daniels has repeatedly said his actor members do not want to strike and that "there is a deal to be made".

For the AMPTP, spokesman Barry Liden said: "The producers are capable of meeting the needs of talent."

Negotiators from SAG and AMPTP have already met to discuss the scheduling and rules for the negotiations, which will be held at the AMPTP headquarters in Encino, California.

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02 May 01 | Film
Scriptwriters seek 'respect'
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