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The Tony Awards Management Committee will appeal to the Writers Guild of America and ask the guild not to picket the televised awards ceremony, in order to potentially move forward with the broadcast, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
On Friday, The Hollywood Reporter reported that the WGA had denied a request for a waiver that would have allowed the Tony Awards to air on CBS and stream on Paramount+ on June 11. But even if the WGA decides not to picket, it is unclear whether talent, most of whom are SAG-AFTRA and Actors’ Equity members, as well as host Ariana DeBose would be willing to cross the picket lines. Actors’ Equity and representatives for DeBose did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The decision to appeal again was made after the Tony Awards Management Committee held an emergency meeting Monday to determine the fate of the awards. Another potential option would be presenting the awards at a non-televised event on June 11, but then the nominated productions, most of whom perform on the telecast, would lose out on the marketing boost from being broadcast to a national viewership. Postponement is not an option on the table.
Voting for the Tony Awards has been scheduled to begin May 16.
The show was originally scheduled to air in two parts, with a preshow, entitled The Tony Awards: Act One, airing live on Paramount Global’s FAST platform, Pluto TV, from 6:30-8 p.m. ET/ 3:30-5 p.m. PT. The main ceremony was set to air on CBS, from 8-11 p.m. ET/5- 8 p.m. PT and also stream live and on-demand on Paramount+.
The 76th Annual Tony Awards has been announced to take place at the new location of the United Palace in New York City’s Washington Heights. (The ceremony has traditionally been held at Radio City Music Hall).
Other awards shows have been disrupted by the WGA strike so far. The MTV Movie Awards was moved to a pre-taped show from a live ceremony on May 7, after the WGA had said it would picket the awards show. Host Drew Barrymore also dropped out before the show pivoted to pre-taped, in solidarity with the WGA. The guild canceled its picket after the formatting changed.
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