The highly anticipated 75th annual Primetime Emmy Awards, originally scheduled to air live on Fox from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles on September 18, has been delayed, according to sources at PEOPLE.
The delay comes in the midst of a series of union strikes, notably involving the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and SAG-AFTRA, which have affected Hollywood and the entertainment industry at large. The Creative Arts Emmys, initially planned for September 9 and 10, have also been impacted by the ongoing strikes.
As of now, no official rescheduled dates have been announced. However, insiders familiar with the situation suggest that Fox is likely to announce a new ceremony date in January 2024. Variety had previously reported that Fox was considering a January date.
The WGA initiated its strike on May 2 after negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) failed to reach a resolution before the deadline. This marks the first WGA strike in 15 years, with the 2007-2008 strike lasting 100 days. The 1988 strike remains the longest in history, spanning a total of 153 days.
The current strike is taking place amid major shifts in the entertainment landscape, including the rise of streaming platforms, the popularity of mini-rooms for writing teams, and concerns about the potential integration of artificial intelligence (AI) in creative processes. The writers’ demands include improved overall compensation, better residual rates in the streaming era, guarantees of employment duration, mandatory minimum staff writers per room, and restrictions on AI utilization.
In their “Writers Are Not Keeping Up” report, released in March, the WGA highlighted the challenges faced by writers working in TV staffs, where many are working for minimum pay, often for fewer weeks, or in mini-rooms, while showrunners are left without sufficient writing staff to complete the season. Despite increasing series budgets, median writer-producer pay has experienced a decline.
Writers have historically played crucial roles in organizing the Emmys ceremony. To support the strike, writers and showrunners have abstained from participating in promotional events, such as the TV Academy’s For Your Consideration events, to avoid crossing picket lines. As a result of the strike, several late-night shows, including Late Night with Seth Meyers, Saturday Night Live, and The Daily Show, have temporarily halted production. Productions for scripted shows, such as the final season of Stranger Things, were also affected.
In a parallel move, approximately 160,000 actors who are members of SAG and AFTRA, many of whom are nominees for the 2023 Emmy Awards, have also gone on strike. The actors’ union officially initiated the strike on July 13 after unsuccessful contract negotiations with the AMPTP.
Like their writer counterparts, actors have raised similar concerns regarding compensation and benefit plans, impacted by the streaming model and its effect on wages and residuals. Additionally, they seek safeguards against the potential impact of AI on their work.
As a result of the ongoing strikes, the Daytime Emmys, originally scheduled to air on CBS in June, have been postponed indefinitely. The MTV Movie & TV Awards aired a pre-taped, host-less show in May due to the WGA’s planned picketing of the event. The 2023 Tony Awards proceeded on CBS without writers.
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