Hollywood studios, writers inch closer to deal to end months-long strike

LOS ANGELES – The Writers Guild of America and the group representing major Hollywood studios said they would meet for a second day, an encouraging sign that talks were progressing in a labour standoff that has lasted for months.

Walt Disney’s Mr Bob Iger, Netflix’s Mr Ted Sarandos, NBCUniversal’s Ms Donna Langley, Warner Discovery’s Mr David Zaslav and other executives participated in the talks, according to people familiar with the discussions who asked not to be identified because the negotiations were not public.

The studios made a new offer and the guild would give its response on Thursday.

The companies have agreed to one of the union’s major demands: additional payments for the success of TV shows on streaming services.

Another major request by the union – minimum staffing levels for writers – is still in dispute.

The guild, along with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, issued a rare joint statement on Wednesday, saying that their discussions would continue.

They have been meeting intermittently over the past few weeks after little discussion for months.

The writers’ union, which represents some 11,500 screenwriters across the United States, has been on strike since May, seeking higher pay and other changes in a new contract.

The Screen Actors Guild joined them in July in a work stoppage that has largely shut down TV and film production. BLOOMBERG