Thursday, December 25, 2008

SAG Ready to Call it Off?

Emergency Meeting Called for January 12-13
By Dave McNary

SAG's postponement of its strike authorization vote may signal that its leaders are tilting in a more moderate direction -- so much so that the divisive vote may be called off.

It's still unclear what direction the national board will take at its emergency meeting on Jan. 12-13, scheduled ostensibly by national exec director Doug Allen and president Alan Rosenberg to persuade the fractured 71-member panel to present a united front and convince members to vote up a strike authorization.

But the timing of the Monday night announcement was telling. It came a few hours after Allen and Rosenberg met with leaders of the Unite for Strength faction, a group of Hollywood moderates who gained five board seats in the fall after campaigning on a platform that asserted that Rosenberg and his allies had bungled the contract negotiations strategy.

Unite for Strength spokesman Ned Vaughn told Daily Variety that he and his colleagues expressed concerns about going ahead with the vote, given the growing numbers of SAG members - particularly high-profile stars such as George Clooney and Tom Hanks - coming on the "no" side.

"We felt that in light of what's been happening that it would have been reckless for the national board to proceed without having the chance to reconsider," Vaughn said. "We appreciate that they've taken our concerns seriously."

Read the full article here