Writers Guild Cancels Meeting With Showrunners Seeking to End Hollywood Strikes

The WGA has reportedly called of a meeting with some of the guild's top showrunners.

This time last month, negotiators with the Writers Guild of America and Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) met for the first time since the WGA's strike began in May. Despite morale seemingly being high heading into the meeting, the two sides left the negotiation table further apart than when they entered. Now, it looks like WGA leadership may be tussling with some of Hollywood's top showrunners. A new report from TheWrap suggests WGA officials have cancelled a meeting with showrunners, one initially scheduled in hopes of helping guild leadership craft a potential offer the AMPTP may agree to.

Kenya Barris and Noah Hawley were two of the showrunners set to met with WGA negotiators before the latter canceled the meeting after a week of in-fighting. According to the trade, calls between the two sides of writers ended with shouting matches and "screaming hangups."

"The showrunners began to reach out for clarification last Tuesday, and the exchanges with WGA leadership was described to TheWrap by an individual with knowledge as intense and emotional, with phone calls between individual showrunners and guild leaders leading to fights, shouting matches and 'screaming hangups,' as the individual put it," TheWrap's Sharon Waxman reports.

After the group's latest meeting with studio heads, WGA negotiators said the AMPTP didn't arrive to negotiate, but lectured the writers on which deals they should take.

"On Monday of this week, we received an invitation to meet with Bob Iger, Donna Langley, Ted SarandosDavid Zaslav and Carol Lombardini," a WGA memo released in August reads in part. "It was accompanied by a message that it was past time to end this strike and that the companies were finally ready to bargain for a deal. We accepted that invitation and, in good faith, met tonight, in hopes that the companies were serious about getting the industry back to work. Instead, on the 113th day of the strike – and while SAG-AFTRA is walking the picket lines by our side – we were met with a lecture about how good their single and only counteroffer was. We explained all the ways in which their counter's limitations and loopholes and omissions failed to sufficiently protect writers from the existential threats that caused us to strike in the first place. We told them that a strike has a price, and that price is an answer to all – and not just some – of the problems they have created in the business."

The WGA has now been on the picket lines for over 130 days.