AFTRA, studios aren't talking following the first day of talks


The first full day of talks between AFTRA and the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers wrapped up Thursday with no reports from either side because of to a press blackout.

The performers' union and the producers kicked off three hours of formal talks on the primetime/TV contract at the AMPTP's headquarters in Sherman Oaks.

The negotiations began in the wake of a failed last-ditch effort by SAG, which asked AFTRA to postpone for a third time its scheduled talks with the AMPTP. AFTRA rejected SAG's Doug Allen's presentation, proposing that both sides join in the bargaining process.

Tensions between the unions have been growing for more than year, culminating with what AFTRA claims was an attempted raid on "The Bold and the Beautiful" by SAG this year. That event prompted the performers union to go it alone.

With 44,000 members carrying SAG and AFTRA cards, AFTRA president Roberta Reardon sent a message to members, pushing for solidarity within the union as they start the talks.

"The stakes are high and passions can run even higher," Reardon wrote. "At such a time, AFTRA's historic ability to remain firm, clear-sighted and united is more important than ever."

The union and producers return to the table today. (partialdiff)