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Robin Williams on Thursday delivered bagels and walked the picket line in support of striking writers with such celebrities as David Duchovny and Tim Robbins.
Day 4 of the writers strike moved back to Midtown Manhattan and the Columbus Circle headquarters of media giant Time Warner. More than 100 often-boisterous picketers lined the circle in front of Time Warner Center. The large inflatable rat that had accompanied strikers earlier in the week was replaced by an equally large inflatable “greedy” pig, which sat alongside the road greeting passers-by.
The actors, all well versed on the issues, said they were supporting the writers and others who don’t make large salaries and often live from project to project.
“This is not about millionaire screenwriters. They don’t need to be on strike. This is not about me, I’m fine,” Robbins told The Hollywood Reporter. “This is about a large amount of people who are simply trying to get their fair share.”
Williams said there are not only the writers but hundreds of other people below the line who are unfortunately victims of the strike as well. “You want to resolve it for their sake and get everybody back working and find a way to share it,” Williams said,
“Law & Order: SVU’s” Chris Meloni said there has been plenty of talk on the set about the ripple effect.
“It’s causing a lot of pain and hardship to a lot of working people and working families,” he said. “There’s a bad feeling on the set. It’s Christmastime.” He said that many of the nonwriters are in communion with the writers on the issues.
Meloni said that the writers are waging a battle that eventually could affect the directors and actors unions, whose contracts run out next year.
“We’re fighting over discrepancies how each side views this new technology, these new platforms,” Meloni said. “They’re saying, ‘We haven’t found a way to tap into the revenue stream.’ Yet they tell Wall Street a different story.”
Williams agreed. “I know they’re saying (the studios) don’t make (money) on the Internet, but there’s all sort of downloadable content, just iTunes alone and the stuff that people can download directly,” he said. “There’s money being made there.”
Duchovny won’t immediately be affected because principal photography is about to begin on “The X-Files” movie sequel, and Showtime’s “Californication” won’t come back until April. But he said that he’s a member of the WGA and felt he needed to be on the picket line. He said he hopes the parties will return to the bargaining table.
“When they sit down again, hopefully they’ll be able to get things done,” Duchovny said.
Former “Frasier” star David Hyde Pierce came to support the writers and said that he didn’t understand why negotiations have stopped. “This industry runs on the writers, and we should be helping them,” he said.
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