The union that represents some 60,000 film and television workers set a strike deadline of Monday at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, putting pressure on producers to get a deal done and avoid shutdown of many Hollywood films and television shows.

Matthew Loeb, the president of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees International, announced that unless an agreement is reached, union members will begin a nationwide strike against the Alliance of Motion Pictures Producers on Monday.

Loeb said the union will continue bargaining with the producers this week to reach agreements that address core issues, such as reasonable rest periods, meal breaks, and a living wage for those on the bottom of the wage scale.

“However, the pace of bargaining doesn’t reflect any sense of urgency,” Loeb said in a release. “Without an end date, we could keep talking forever. Our members deserve to have their basic needs addressed now.”

IATSE members who work in television and film production at 36 IATSE local unions across the country — including 13 on the West Coast — voted over the weekend of Oct. 1-3 to authorize the union’s president to call a strike if contract talks didn’t result in a new contract for the 60,000 film and television workers.

Voter turnout was 90%, with 98.6% of those voting in support of authorizing a strike.

In a comment on Wednesday, the AMPTP said, “There are five whole days left to reach a deal, and the studios will continue to negotiate in good faith in an effort to reach an agreement for a new contract that will keep the industry working.”

The union represents “below the line” workers such as production and department coordinators, writers’ assistants, cinematographers, costumers, grips, script supervisors, technicians, designers and others.

In response to the vote, the AMPTP released a statement, saying it “remains committed to reaching an agreement that will keep the industry working.

“We deeply value our IATSE crew members and are committed to working with them to avoid shutting down the industry at such a pivotal time, particularly since the industry is still recovering from the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic,” the producers’ statement said.

“A deal can be made at the bargaining table, but it will require both parties working together in good faith with a willingness to compromise and to explore new solutions to resolve the open issues.”

Earlier this month, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Burbank, and Sen. Alex Padilla, D-California, joined with 118 U.S. senators and House members in sending a letter to the AMPTP, urging the association to negotiate collaboratively and in good faith.

The letter followed an action by the Los Angeles City Council, in which four council members introduced a motion urging the AMPTP and the union representing skilled crew and craftspeople to bargain in good faith and come to an agreement. A vote by council members was not immediately scheduled.

Councilman Mitch O’Farrell and Councilwoman Nithya Raman, whose districts include parts of Hollywood, said they stood behind the union members.

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