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January 11, 2008

With savings dwindling, TV and film writers picket in NYC

From the Associated Press: As the walkout stretched into its 10th week, hundreds gathered in front of the offices of Viacom Inc., including some writers who have seen their shows return to the air without them. One protester's sign urged the media conglomerate, which owns Comedy Central, to "Do the Write Thing." Jay Katsir, a […]

January 10, 2008

Directors Guild talks intensifying

The L. A. Times reports: The meeting of the DGA's negotiating committee follows two weeks of informal talks between DGA officials and studio executives to establish a framework and economic parameters for a deal that could determine when Hollywood goes back to work. With the television industry largely shut down as a result of the […]

January 7, 2008

New rules for ‘Maher’ return

From The Hollywood Reporter: HBO's "Real Time With Bill Maher" will return with new episodes Friday sans writers and without two of its most popular features, Maher's opening monologue and the closing segment "New Rules." As an opening segment for his shows during the strike, Maher plans to go into the crowd to riff with […]

January 4, 2008

A Sequel With the Same Ending

Author Thom Taylor's Los Angeles Times op-ed about how the stakes in entertainment are changing in response to the WGA strike. The writers guild keeps saying that its strike against the studios is about the future, but one need only look back to the 1988 strike to see that in key ways it is a […]

January 3, 2008

Broadband Video Grows; TV Preferred

Shahnaz Mahmud reports: As much as 86 percent download on a monthly basis, according to the Broadband Content and Services 2007 study by market research and consulting company Horowitz Associates. These figures are up from 45 percent and 71 percent, respectively, that were released in the 2006 study. Horowitz Associates found that news and user-generated […]

January 3, 2008

The Late Show Strike Show

After his production company Worldwide Pants reached an interim deal with the WGA for The Late Show and The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, David Letterman went back on live TV last night sporting a strike beard and showing strong support for some very funny lines. The show opened with a cameo by Hillary […]

January 2, 2008

Carson looms as latenight returns

THE LATENIGHT TALKSHOWS sign on again this week and, as is so often the case, Johnny Carson's shadow looms large over them. Carson reluctantly returned to "The Tonight Show" in 1988 — after staying away a few months because of that year's writers strike — saying he could no longer in good conscience let his […]

December 28, 2007

Late night TV returns soon, but in what form?

From the Associated Press: After two months away because of the still-unresolved writers strike, NBC's Leno and O'Brien, and ABC's Kimmel, resume their programs next Tuesday, Jan. 2. Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert come back to Comedy Central the following Monday, Jan. 7. Barring a New Year's miracle, none of their writers will be joining […]

December 26, 2007

L. A. Times: Writers have a lot riding on a director

Long before he became a lead negotiator for the Directors Guild of America, Gilbert Cates honed his skills as a fencer. In college he would spend hours some days lunging at "suspended doughnuts" to sharpen his aim before facing a human opponent. Cates is preparing for his next parry and thrust — a labor negotiation […]

December 24, 2007

AP: News Unlikely to Fill TV Strike Holes

David Bauder reports for the Associated Press:     To prepare for a prolonged writers strike, television networks have stockpiled a gladiator battle, a lie-detector game, a remade "Password," a celebrity "Apprentice" and a competition for aspiring Pussycat Dolls. Among the new shows to roll out in prime-time this winter, what's the one programming genre […]