As the actors’ strike approaches its 100th day, there may be a light at the end of the tunnel.
Some big stars are putting their money where their mouth is.
Some of the biggest stars in Hollywood, like George Clooney, Ben Affleck and Scarlett Johansson, are offering to give SAG-AFTRA over $150 million to help end the strike.
Their solution is to remove the cap of SAG-AFTRA dues to help fund the areas of the union that need some help.
Clooney himself spoke to the outlet to explain their plan.
“A lot of the top earners want to be part of the solution,” he said. “We’ve offered to remove the cap on dues, which would bring over $50 million to the union annually. Well over $150 million over the next three years. We think it’s fair for us to pay more into the union. We also are suggesting a bottom-up residual structure — meaning the top of the call sheet would be the last to collect residuals, not the first. These negotiations will be ongoing, but we wanted to show that we’re all in this together and find ways to help close the gap on actors getting paid.”
It is a laudable proposal, but sources tell Variety that the idea didn’t “go over” so well and the “didn’t see the validity” of the proposal.
Late Thursday night, SAG released a statement about the A-listers’ offer.
“This generous concept is worthy of consideration, but it is in no way related to and would have no bearing on this present contract or even as a subject of collective bargaining,” the statement read in part. “It is, in fact, prohibited by Federal labor law. For example, our Pension and Health plans are funded exclusively from employer contributions. It also doesn’t speak to the scale of the overall package.”
“Having said that, their creativity and earnest desire to help solve the impasse are very much appreciated. It is worth noting that the union has a very robust process to include the concerns of every member.”
However, the union says studio execs shouldn’t think the “good will of member emissaries distract us from our mission.”
SAG-AFTRA members have been on strike since July after negotiations with Hollywood studios and streaming services failed to produce a deal.
The WGA ended its strike in late September.