Striking Hollywood writers vow not to picket Tony Awards, opening the door to some kind of show

Streaming HUBMay 16, 2023

NEW YORK (AP) – Striking members of the Writers Guild of America have said they will not picket next month’s Tony Awards telecast, clearing a thorny issue facing show organizers and opening the door for some kind of Broadway glitz on TV. opened up.

The union last week denied a request by Tony organizers for an exemption for their June 11 live telecast. It reiterated that in a statement late Monday, the Guild said it “will not negotiate an interim agreement or waiver for the Tony Awards.”

But the Guild expressed some hope that some kind of Tony show could go on, saying that organizers “are changing this year’s show to suit specific requests from the WGA, and so the WGA will not be holding the show.” What was being changed was unclear, but it may have been to allow the non-scripted version of the Tonys to continue.

The strike, which has already blacked out late-night TV shows such as “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” and “Saturday Night Live,” is delaying production of scripted TV shows. jeopardizing theatre’s biggest night. One that many Broadway shows rely on to attract interest with the millions of people watching.

The union – representing 11,500 writers across film, television and other entertainment forms – has been on strike since May 2, mainly over royalties from streaming media. While the Guild does not represent Broadway writers, it does represent writers who work on Tonys telecasts.

Tony organizers faced a stark choice after their request for an exemption was denied: either postpone the ceremony until after the strike was over or announce the winners at a non-televised reception. Who will ask the nominated people to cross the picket lines. Monday’s decision means a third way is likely: an unscripted show that relies heavily on performances.

This is roughly what happened during the 1988 awards, which were broadcast during the Writers Guild of America walkout. Host Angela Lansbury and the presenters speak impromptu and accompany the show’s performances such as “A Chorus Line” and “Anything Goes”.

Prior to the Writers Guild of America’s decision, a two-part Tony ceremony was planned, with a pre-show of the performance streaming live on Pluto and the main awards ceremony broadcast live on CBS and live for premium-level Peacock members. Streaming was done.

The first major award show during the current strike was the MTV Movie & TV Awards, which had no host and relied on recycled clips and pre-recorded acceptance speeches. The strike has also disrupted the PEN America Gala and the Peabody Awards, which celebrates broadcast and streaming media, canceled its June 11 awards show on Monday.


Mark Kennedy is in

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