IATSE locals seal deal with studios, nets

New pact will run for three years starting Aug. 1

The 15 local chapters of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees ratified the new contract with the studios and networks Friday. The new deal will go into effect Aug. 1 and run for three years.

According to a post on SAGWatch.net, however, the support for the deals was not overwhelming.

Local 700, the Motion Picture Editors Guild, said that 75% of its members voted for ratification. (It's not uncommon for these types of contracts to receive 90% approval.) The backing among cinematographers (Local 600) was even less effusive: 58%-42%.

Still, IATSE president Matthew Loeb said he was happy with the results.

"We have delivered a strong contract in a very chaotic economic climate," he said in a statement. "We feel we have given our members the best protection we can at a time when the bottom is falling out of a lot of traditional business models. We look forward to three years of labor stability and a commitment to keeping our members working."

AMPTP spokesman Jesse Hiestand sent this response: "The ratification vote by IATSE members is good news for our entire industry. This is the fifth major entertainment labor agreement ratified over the last year, and it will help bring stability to our business at a time of enormous economic uncertainty. We look forward to working with IATSE members -- and with everyone else in our industry -- to emerge from today's significant challenges with a strong and growing business."