These past few days were a particularly tense period between the Writers Guild of America (Wga) and the Alliances of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), as the impending termination of a previous deal between the two parties regarding more funding for writers compensation out of studio profits.

Everybody’s hackles were raised even further when a WGA vote resulted in an authorization to strike if now new agreement could be reached with the AMPTP on Monday, May 1. Such a mass walkout of writers for film and television would have negatively impacted some series [VIDEO] and scripted TV programming.

It was fortunate that both camps were able to come together for renewed discussion last April 25, intent on “going down the wire” if necessary to forge a new deal they can work with.

These efforts have borne fruit. The WGA will not strike.

Last-minute deal

The promised talk down the wire came to a conclusion on the expiration of the old writer-producer agreement on May 1. In its wake is a new deal, effective for three more years, which has quite narrowly averted the impending WGA strike against their producers.

Such a worst-case scenario would have seen California get pummeled by a weekly $200 million hit to their economy and likely turned off TV watchers who would’ve migrated to digital streaming platforms.

WGA West executive director David Young broke the news of the finalized new agreement, and according to former WGA president Patric Verrone, who was in charge during the last writers’ strike from 2007-08, the deal is guaranteed to be beneficial to the writers they represent.

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This was echoed by WGA East president Michael Winship, who believes that the producers being amenable to concessions was due to the mobilization of the whole WGA once the strike was authorized.

On the morning of Tuesday May 2, both the WGA and the AMPTP made a joint declaration of their new accord, stating thus: "The Writers Guilds of America, West and East and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers have concluded negotiations and have reached a tentative agreement on terms for a new three-year collective bargaining agreement."

What was agreed upon?

Not much has been made public about what the new deal addressed particular issues between writers and producers. Inside sources, however, have hinted on a few factors. They included overage payments, cutting down on exclusivity and “holding” writers, wage increases, WGA health plan cash infusions, and script parity. More details will be explained in the following days.

The previous WGA strike cost the California economy anywhere from $2.1 to $2.5 billion in all its 100 days duration.