IATSE locals seal their deal with the studios


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

According to a post on SAGWatch.net, however, the support for the deals wasn't overwhelming.

Local 700, the Motion Picture Editors Guild, said Friday 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.

"We have delivered a strong contract in a very chaotic economic climate," he said. "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."

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. … 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."

Andrew Salomon is news editor of Back Stage.