SAG-AFTRA Extends Video Game Performer Contract

Gabrielle Carteris - H - 2020
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SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris.

The extension terms include a 3 percent annual wage increase and 0.5 percent health and retirement contribution increase.

Days before its contract with video game producers was set to expire, SAG-AFTRA leadership said it reached a deal with nine employers to extend coverage for voiceover and performance capture talent.

The union said on Thursday that it would extend the 2017 Interactive Media Agreement to Nov. 7, 2022. The extension terms include a 3 percent annual wage increase and 0.5 percent health and retirement contribution increase.

About 7,200 performers of the union's 160,000 members are likely to be impacted by the terms of the contract extension.

"The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the entertainment industry, but work on video games, much of which can be done remotely, has continued," stated SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris. "This extension allows members to keep working and have some certainty during an uncertain time."

Parties to the contract extension with the union include Activision Productions Inc., Blindlight LLC, Disney Character Voices Inc., Electronic Arts Productions Inc., Formosa Interactive LLC, Insomniac Games Inc., Take 2 Productions Inc., VoiceWorks Productions Inc. and WB Games Inc.

"Rather than enter full-scale negotiations, the committee proposed extending the 2017 agreement. The compensation increases and benefit enhancements allow us to sustain the growth in earnings for members," stated SAG-AFTRA chief contracts officer Ray Rodriguez.

The Interactive Media Agreement deal arose out of a performer strike that occurred from October 2016 to September 2017 against 11 major video game companies, leading to an agreement that provided wage increases, a new bonus structure and transparency provisions with employers. By a 90 percent to 10 percent national vote margin, SAG-AFTRA members agreed to terms of that deal in November 2017.