Hollywood actors ratify contract to formally end strike
Hollywood actors overwhelmingly ratified a new, hard-fought deal with studios on Dec. 5 that paves the way for a rebound of an entertainment industry that had seen film and television production come to a halt during a months-long strike.
The Screen Actors Guild, known as SAG-AFTRA, said 78 percent of members who voted approved the multiyear contract.
"This is a golden age for SAG-AFTRA, and our union has never been more powerful," union president Fran Drescher said in a statement.
The deal includes more than $1 billion in new compensation and benefits as well as protections for actors from the use of artificial intelligence by studios, the union said.
The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), which represents Netflix Inc., Walt Disney and other studios, hailed the union contract ratification.
"With this vote, the industry and the jobs it supports will be able to return in full force," the AMPTP said in a statement.
Voting ended at 5 p.m. on the U.S. West Coast with a simple majority of members required to finally seal the agreement. The union said 38 percent of its members cast votes.
The tentative deal between SAG-AFTRA and Hollywood studios to end the actors' 118-day strike was agreed last month, and actors had gone back to work before the ratification vote.
The proposed contract contained higher pay, better bonuses for starring in hit shows or films, and the first-ever protections against the use of artificial intelligence to replace human actors. It was ratified by the union's leadership two days later, though not unanimously.
Union leaders have since held meetings and sent out emails and social media posts to members, strongly urging them to approve the deal.