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An Insider’s View On Hollywood’s Crippling Strikes

Hollywood has ground to a halt after Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) – the biggest union representing actors and production staff decided to join writers in going on strike for better pay and conditions.

It’s the first time in 60 years both groups have gone on strike at the same time – and it means production on television, streaming and movies has stopped.

At least a dozen movies have paused production so far, including Deadpool 3, Lilo and Stitch and Dune: Part Two to name a few.

In this episode of The Briefing, we’re joined by Kym Jackson, a member of SAG-AFTRA to explain what it means for the future of Hollywood and the film industry here in Australia.

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Kym describes the glitz and glamorous lifestyle isn’t as all as it seems, and it’s not all actors that get to experience this lifestyle.

For a lot of actors, they’re making a wage similar to the everyday working person, and in a lot of circumstances, even less.

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“A vast majority of the Screen Actors Guild members don’t even make their insurance every year, which is around about $30,000 a year,” she said.

“Most gigging actors will hope to make insurance but maybe 50-to-80 grand a year if we’re lucky.

“You’ve got your celebrities out there, but then working actors, even people who’ve been on a show, when you go to their houses or you see them on Zooms, they’re not in these fancy big houses with marble walls. They’re just in normal people houses, they’re not earning huge amounts of money.

“And you know if an actor does an episode of a TV show in America, you might make ten grand for a week and a half’s work, which sounds great. But if you’re only doing three of those jobs a year, then you really start relying on those royalty checks coming through to back it up.”

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