IATSE and Studios Are Close to a Fundamental Agreement, but Sticking Points Remain - Latest Global News

IATSE and Studios Are Close to a Fundamental Agreement, but Sticking Points Remain

EXCLUSIVE: Negotiations between IATSE and AMPTP are expected to continue late into Thursday night as the two sides near a new three-year contract for LA Locals, but they still have a ways to go.

“Things are looking good up close, but nothing is secured yet,” a studio source involved in the talks tells us.

After just over two weeks of direct talks between IATSE and the studios over a new basic bargaining agreement for members in the City of Angels and surrounding region, we hear job security remains a key sticking point for members of the Matt Loeb-led union.

Facing backlash against the last contract in 2021 and a much narrower-than-hoped margin of victory in ratifying that agreement, IATSE leaders are determined to bring home a nearly “bulletproof” agreement this year, as one union insider put it.

In a multi-talk process between several guilds that began on March 4th, IATSE has set a deadline of midnight today, May 16th, for this final round.

But if no deal is reached by twelve o’clock, all hope is not lost. IATSE still has several weeks of negotiations on the Area Standards Agreement on the books, which could also be used to work out the final details of the basic agreement.

AMPTP representatives did not respond to requests for comment when contacted by deadline this afternoon. IATSE declined to comment.

According to Deadline, while there are some hurdles that could prevent an agreement on the base agreement on Thursday evening, IATSE is expected to remain on track and complete all negotiations by early June, when the Teamsters and other Hollywood Basic Crafts will begin negotiations. Major disruptions could delay these negotiations, but sources say this does not appear to be the case so far.

The Basic Crafts have returned to the table with the IATSE several times throughout this negotiation process to discuss shared benefit plans with the AMPTP. According to sources, they were expected to be back in the room with IATSE on Thursday. It is not clear what other items were on the union’s agenda.

Once agreement is reached on the Basic Agreement for LA locals, IATSE will continue negotiations on the Area Standards Agreement, which covers 23 additional IATSE locals throughout the United States

Neither the IATSE nor the Teamsters and Basic Crafts currently have a vote on strike authorization – a difference from early 2023, when the WGA began its negotiations with the AMPTP with that authorization in hand.

However, IATSE leadership has made it clear loudly that the union is not interested in extending the current contract beyond its July 31 expiration date.

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