Along with the WGA strike, the SAG-AFTRA strike is also shutting down productions across Hollywood as the likes of Deadpool 3, Stranger Things, The Sandman, Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part Two, and Mortal Combat 2 have hit pause while promotions of completed films get banned too. But amid these strict rules which saw the cast of Oppenheimer leave its London premiere, the filming of a few projects is still underway because of a technicality.
For example, the production of HBO series, House of Dragon and Industry, as well as HBO Max’s Dune spin-off series, Dune: The Sisterhood are scheduled to continue despite the strikes.
Wondering why? It’s because the majority of the members of the above-mentioned productions are part of the British union, Equity, not SAG-AFTRA. But their cast includes SAG-AFTRA members, what if they join the strike? Well, they can’t as according to the U.K.’s strict anti-trade-union laws Equity members and those working on contract with it can’t join the strike, and if they do, they will be facing one mighty lawsuit.
Seeing as the long-running WGA strike failed to be the lesson Hollywood needed and the SAG-AFTRA strike already has studios trying to work around it, the general public, willing to stand in solidarity with the ones rightfully demanding their rights, has come up with a solution – cancel the subscriptions to all streaming platforms. This would in turn leave the studios incapable of meeting a show or film’s needed viewership total even when they manage to circumvent the set rules of the strikes.
At this time, studios are showing no intention of accepting the terms of ending the combined strikes, industry moguls like Bob Iger are openly saying the actors and writers are not being “realistic,” while years of hard work are getting erased from existence by streamers. With creativity and innovation not getting the due it truly deserves, many are considering the idea of giving streamers a taste of their own medicine.
Those planning to bash the British union, Equity, need to know that It’s not like it is in favor of not joining the strike. In a statement to Newsweek, Equity established that it extends “unwavering solidarity” to the actors’ strike as it is also “experiencing bullish engagers attempting to undermine its collectively bargained agreements” and it’s only because of the “restrictive” and “draconian” industrial relations legislation in the U.K. that it can’t join SAG-AFTRA’s fight for their rights.