Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Official Statements on Boycott Ending

New Zealand Actors Equity (NZAE), SAG, and AFTRA have issued statements indicating the do not work ban on The Hobbit production has been official lifted. The notice comes after a busy 24 hours where films actors and crew hit the streets to protest the boycott which is on the verge of causing the production to move to another country.
From Variety:
"New Zealand Actors' Equity and the Screen Production & Development Association (SPADA) have entered into an agreement to commence good faith negotiations for a new set of conditions which will govern the way in which performers are engaged in the local screen industry," read a statement from the two groups.

"Talks are to take place over the next six months. As a sign of good faith, while negotiations occur, Equity has agreed that those productions which fully comply with the current guidelines for the engagement of cast in the industry -- 'The Pink Book'-- will not be subject to industrial action," the press release continued.
From Deadline:
Los Angeles (October 20, 2010) - Screen Actors Guild today released the following statement regarding the feature film production The Hobbit:

“Today, our sister union New Zealand Actors Equity issued a statement recommending all international performer unions rescind their member advisories on the feature film production The Hobbit. In light of this recommendation, Screen Actors Guild will be alerting its members that they are now free to accept engagements, under Screen Actors Guild contract terms and conditions, on The Hobbit.”

NZ Actors Equity today recommended that the international performer unions of FIA withdraw their respective member advisories prohibiting members from accepting employment on the theatrical motion picture The Hobbit.

In light of this advisory and the recommendation from NZ Actors Equity, AFTRA hereby notifies all members that they may now accept employment on The Hobbit, under Screen Actors Guild contract terms and conditions.

We thank you for your show of solidarity with our international brothers and sisters.
I hope these official announcements will address Warner Bros and Peter Jackson's concerns and keep the production in New Zealand for the sake of thousands of workers that had nothing to do with the actor unions actions. Having said that, the questions remains, what happens if an agreement isn't reached in six months? Will NZAE and SAG reissue the boycott? The Hobbit is likely to be filming for the next year or more so that is a huge concern that is part of the equation on if a move is done or not.

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