Dispatches From WGA Picket Lines: Tony Kushner Slams Studios’ Greed At Peacock NewFront Presentation

in hours wgaIn its first strike in more than 15 years, writers took to the streets in New York to picket the Mayur Newfront presentation.

danny strong

Beginning with a few dozen participants, the crowd at 415 Fifth Avenue swelled to nearly 300, wrapping around the block. In the shadow of the Empire State Building, picketers waved signs saying, “No Writing / No TV!” Slogans like and chanted with the signals of a bullhorn: “What do we want? Contract! When do we want it? Now! If we don’t get it / shut it down! An inflatable rat was deployed by unions around town, standing on a sidewalk to attract unwanted attention from an employer.

Connected: WGA strike explained: The issues, stakes, movies and TV shows affected – and how long it could last

The picket line attracted an array of participants, with rank-and-file writers joined by some top names, including Tony and Emmy winner Tony Kushner and Emmy winner Danny Strong.

“This strike is fundamentally about fairness and that writers must be fairly compensated for the content they write which is the foundation of our employer’s profits,” Strong said.

Tony Kushner

Kushner told Deadline he’s prepared for a long battle with AMPTP, In 2007–08, he said, “They said the same things but since then they’ve become a bit more creative. It’s the short-sightedness and the greed and the complete indifference to people’s lives that make them enrich the product that really Horrible. It’s disgusting.”

Meanwhile, inside the corporate event space, Newfront attendees checked in at colorfully branded Peacock desks after maneuvering through picketers. “Well, that’s interesting,” an ad agency muttered before heading upstairs for canapés and cocktails before the presentation.

Connected: Deadline’s Full Strike Coverage

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Writers Guild strike