True Blood Season 2: Sagging Contract Negotiations Pose Mild Threat

February 21, 2009

sag_logo_75Hopes for a quick resolution to the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) contract conundrum died with a whimper yesterday as negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) hit a brick wall after adding a third day to the renewed talks. The new SAG negotiators, put in place during the recent uprising of the moderate sector of SAG, had hoped that the producers would move a bit more than they have. While SAG has now offered to accept the studios compensation plan for online productions, the major sticking point for the last 8 months, the studios only tweaked their offer slightly with such magnanimous offers as to not rescind scheduled lunch breaks. And you thought indentured servitude was an old fashioned idea…

According to Variety:
“That proposal wasn’t enough to persuade SAG’s leaders to accept the “last, best and final” offer, which included half a dozen “concessions” by the AMPTP

  1. Withdrawal of the proposal on “French Hours,” which covers meal penalties
  2. Modification the “union security” clause for new media productions
  3. Withdrawal of its proposal to eliminate force majeure protection and present a revised clause for series contract performers impacted by an unforeseen event such as the WGA strike
  4. Increased covered background performers in features from two to five
  5. Recognition that dancing on hard and slippery surfaces may qualify as hazardous activity
  6. Agreement with SAG’s proposal to all TV stunt coordinators to participate in revenue-based residual payments”

In addition there was a small increase to pensions and health care contributions included in the new offer.

The major sticking point is when the contract will be deemed to start and end. Producers refuse to allow the contract to be retroactive to the date that the previous contract expired because there is a pay increase included that the producers say they cannot afford due to the constricting economy. Additionally SAG wants the contract to end after two years instead of three so that all the various guilds will be negotiating at the same time. The producers don’t want this to happen because it would give the united unions more negotiating heft but they have agreed to let the current contract expire only if a newer agreement is in place already by then, basically denying SAG the opportunity to strike for an additional year when it would once again be negotiating on it’s own.

The SAG negotiating team will present the ‘new’ offer to it’s board on Saturday but the board is fully expected to reject this mainly unchanged new deal. The producers offer is only good for 60 days when it may be revoked or adjusted before being re-offered.

If the new deal is turned down on Saturday there will most likely be increased saber rattling by SAG concerning the possibility of a strike but it still requires a 75% approval vote by members who have thus far shown little inclination to stop working so soon after last years financially devastating WGA strike. Below the line workers will be especially reluctant to strike in these economically difficult times when alternate work will be hard to obtain. It’s unclear when or if SAG would present the option to strike to it’s members but it will take at least a month for the process to complete at earliest in mid to late March. Most shows have accelerated their filming schedules in order to get enough shows in the can to get to the end of the season in case of a SAG strike. Combined with the delay, a ratified strike authorization threat will carry less weight it might have if authorized last fall. And much less impact than last years writers strike.

In an odd confluence of events, SAG and AFTRA will be working together to negotiate with the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) Monday, February 23rd for a new commercials contract. Relations have been strained between SAG and AFTRA since AFTRA abandoned SAG and negotiated their own contract with AMPTP last June. This joint contract will also deal with the problematic new media (ie internet and DVD productions) pay schedules.

Sources:
http://www.variety.com/VR1118000382.html

http://www.shootonline.com/go/news-view.rs-web2-295526-1234973196-2.SAG–AFTRA-To-Come-Together-For-Spot-Negotiations.html

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-sagtalks20-2009feb20,0,4534574.story

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29295718/

(Photo credit: SAG)

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Charlaine Harris And Her Sookie Stackhouse Novels – Part 4

February 21, 2009

chpt4vidCharlaine Harris talks about her Sookie Stackhouse novels and others with Barbara Peters of Poisoned Pen Press and Bookstore in Arizona in this fourth part of a six part series. Charlaine talks to Ms. Peters about her writing, her various novels and books in general. Enjoy the fourth part of this series and come back tomorrow for part five.

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True Blood Season 2: More Roles Cast

February 20, 2009

cheryl-whiteFor season 2 of Alan Ball’s hit HBO TV series “True Blood” two more actors have been cast for roles in the show. Missy Doty (left side photo) has been cast to play the role of Vonetta in Season 2, Episode 1: “Nothing But The Blood”. Ms. Doty will play a 30ish bar patron who gets thrown out of the bar by Terry Bellefleur due to her excessive gossiping. Cheryl White (right side photo) has been cast to play the role of Mrs. Hamby, Jessica’s mother making her first appearance in Season 2, Episode 2: “Keep This Party Going”. Ms. White will have a recurring role playing the grief-stricken and tearful mother of Jessica desperately trying to find information regarding her daughter. She is described as a woman in her 40’s – 50’s who is submissive to her husband’s wishes.
missydoty
SOURCE:
SpoilerGeeks
IMDb

(Photo credit: IMDb)

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Rutina Wesley From True Blood Attends the Essence Magazine Luncheon

February 20, 2009

rutinaluncheonRutina Wesley From True Blood attended the Essence Magazine’s 2nd Annual “Black Women In Hollywood” luncheon on Thursday, 19 February 2009 held at the Beverly Hills Hotel in Los Angeles, California.  This year’s luncheon was hosted by Queen Latifah and honored Halle Berry (Power Award), Gina Prince-Bythewood (Visionary Award), Diahann Carroll (Legend Award) and Taraji P. Henson Lexus Star to Watch Award).

SOURCE:
Associated Press
Brownsista.com

(Photo credit:  David Gabber / PR Photos)

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Charlaine Harris And Her Sookie Stackhouse Novels – Part 3

February 20, 2009

chpt3vidCharlaine Harris talks about her Sookie Stackhouse novels with Barbara Peters of Poisoned Pen Press and Bookstore in Arizona in this third part of a six part series. Charlaine talks to Ms. Peters about her writing, her novels and books in general. Enjoy the third part of this series and come back tomorrow for part four.

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True Blood Poll: Side Threads

February 19, 2009

amyburleyTrue Blood is a very complex fast moving show with intrigue and mystery around every corner. Often there are 3 or 4 threads being followed in each episode. The end of Bill’s human life and Jason trying V heaped on Sam and Sookie’s first date and topped by Gran’s death. How do you feel about all the threads being woven throughout the tapestry that is True Blood?

[poll id=”11″]

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Possession- True Blood: Bill and Sookie Fan Video

February 19, 2009

This fan video was made by Ivyneea on YouTube done to the song “Possession” sung by Sarah McLachlan. The music is very haunting and shows the developing desire and passion growing between Bill and Sookie. This video demonstrates their growing attraction and how irresistible their love is. Enjoy!

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True Blood Nominated for the A-List Awards

February 19, 2009

bsanddogTrue Blood has been nominated in two categories in the 2nd Annual A-List Awards presented by Bravo. The A-List Awards honors those who made an unforgettable mark in the area of food, fashion, beauty, design and pop culture. “True Blood” has been nominated in the category of “Best A-List Show” competing against “Gossip Girl”, “Mad Men”, “The Office” and “30 Rock”. “True Blood” has also been nominated in the category of “Television: Sexiest TV Moment” for “Bill and Sookie’s Love Scene – Episode 7 – Burning House of Love”. They will go head-to-head against “The Office – Dwight and Angela”, “Gossip Girl – Chuck and Blair in the limo”, “LOST – Sawyer & Kate in the chopper”, and “The L Word – the elevator scene”.

The A-List Awards will be hosted by Emmy Award winner and “My Life on the D-List” star Kathy Griffin and will be filmed at The Orpheum Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday, April 5, with a special red carpet pre-show. Voting is limited to U.S. residents only and you can vote as many times as you wish.

To vote go to Bravotv.com

SOURCE:
Bravotv.com
The Futon Critic.com

(Photo credit: HBO Inc.)

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Charlaine Harris And Her Sookie Stackhouse Novels – Part 2

February 19, 2009

chpt2vidCharlaine Harris talks about her Sookie Stackhouse novels with Barbara Peters of Poisoned Pen Press and Bookstore in Arizona in this second part of a six part series where Charlaine sat down to discuss with Ms. Peters her writing and her novels. Enjoy the second part of this series and come back tomorrow for part three.

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Charlaine Harris Talks About Her Sookie Stackhouse Novels

February 18, 2009

charlaineharris3Charlaine Harris talks about her Sookie Stackhouse novels with Barbara Peters of Poisoned Pen Press and Bookstore in Arizona. This is the first part of a six part series where Charlaine sat down to discuss with Ms. Peters her writing and her novels. Please enjoy this video interview with the delightful Charlaine Harris and stay tuned for part two tomorrow.


(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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