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DGA/AMPTP Deal Gets Unanimous Board Approval, Heads to Membership Vote

Directors Guild of America's (DGA) national board voted unanimously to approve the tentative AMPTP deal for a new film & television contract.

Even as the Writers Guild of America (WGA)/Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) writers' strike continues and SAG-AFTRA members just authorized the reunion to call for a strike at the end of the month if a deal with AMPTP isn't reached, the Directors Guild of America (DGA) and the AMPTP are one step closer to finalizing the tentative deal that was announced over this past weekend. On Monday night, the Directors Guild's national board voted unanimously to approve the announced tentative agreement for a new film and TV contract (more details on that below). With the board recommending a "Yes" vote, the deal will now be presented to the guild's members for final ratification.

Image: DGA Screencap

DGA/AMPTP Agreement Details; DGA President Comments

Along with what its saying will be increased transparency on the part of the studios when it comes to reporting residuals, improvements in diversity & inclusion initiatives, Juneteenth becoming a paid holiday, and other gains, here's an outline (courtesy of Deadline Hollywood) of what the DGA says the new agreement brings on a number of key topics:

Wages and Benefits: Groundbreaking gains in wages and benefits including a 5% increase in the first year of the contract, 4% in the second year and 3.5% in the third year. Additional 0.5% to fund a new parental leave benefit.

Global Streaming Residuals: Substantial increase in the residuals for dramatic programs made for SVOD by securing a new residual structure to pay foreign residuals. The result is a 76% increase in foreign residuals for the largest platforms so that residuals for a one-hour episode will now be roughly $90,000 for the first three exhibition years.

Artificial Intelligence: Groundbreaking agreement confirming that AI is not a person and that generative AI cannot replace the duties performed by members.

Non-Dramatic Programs: Established the industry's first-ever terms and conditions for directors and their teams on non-dramatic (Variety and Reality) programs made for SVOD. Improved residuals and for the first time, Associate Directors and Stage Managers will now share in the residuals.

High Budget AVOD Terms and Conditions: Achieved the industry's first-ever terms, creative rights protections, working conditions and residuals for scripted dramatic projects made for free to the consumer streaming services such as Freevee, Tubi and Roku. Unit Production Managers and Assistant Directors will share in the residuals.

Feature Directors: Historic first-time compensation for the months of "soft prep" Feature Directors currently perform for free prior to the start of the director's official prep period.

Episodic Directors: For Pay TV and SVOD, Episodic Directors won expanded paid post-production creative rights; and gained an additional guaranteed shoot day for one-hour programs – the first additional day added in more than 40 years.

Reduction in Hours: Unprecedented reduction in the length of the Assistant Director's day by one hour.

Safety: Achieved concrete safety advancements including the first-ever pilot program to require the employment of dedicated safety supervisors; expanded safety training programs for both directors and their teams, and the ban of live ammunition on set.

"We set out to negotiate a contract that would build for the future. This is a significant deal with gains for every director, assistant director, unit production manager, associate director, and stage manager," said DGA President Lesli Linka Glatter in a statement. "Our industry is rapidly changing and expanding, and this agreement is what we need to adapt to those changes, break new ground, and protect the DGA's 19,000 directors and directorial team members today and in the years to come. Along with the rest of the DGA National Board, I am proud to enthusiastically recommend this tentative agreement to our members for ratification. Together, we will secure the future we deserve."

Glatter continued, "Across the country, directors and their teams, writers, actors, crews, and drivers have shown unwavering resolve in demanding to share in the success of the films and television shows we create together. We are all union members and deserve to be compensated fairly for our contributions. We don't bargain in a vacuum, and the gains we have achieved in our tentative agreement would not have been possible without the strong support and unity of our members and the solidarity of our sister guilds and unions. We continue to support the actors who are entering negotiations tomorrow and the writers who remain on strike. We stand firmly with SAG-AFTRA and the WGA in our shared fight for a vibrant, sustainable industry that fairly values us all."

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Ray FlookAbout Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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