Hollywood 2010:08

The Official E-Newsletter of the Hollywood Division
The Official E-Newsletter of the Hollywood Division
August 2010

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A MESSAGE FROM
THE 1ST VICE PRESIDENT


Well, SAG and AFTRA have completed the Wages and Working Conditions meetings and caucuses. We are now about to enter the next phase before beginning formal negotiations on September 27. Members of both SAG and AFTRA W&W committees will meet in a national plenary to go over the proposal package voted up unanimously on the last day of our joint W&W meetings. Negotiations are going to be a challenge. Especially considering the offer received and ultimately approved by the Teamsters. Is it a 2 percent world? Who knows? But SAG and AFTRA will do their best not to be distracted by other unions’ issues and put the livelihood and security of our members, with our very unique needs, first.

As many of you have seen in press releases and in the media, AFTRA and SAG created The Presidents’ Forum for One Union to begin a serious dialogue regarding the potential formation of a different union. And as many of you know, I've always believed that any official dialogue regarding this subject, in the midst of negotiations, is too soon and a distraction. I believe both unions should look at our current joint negotiations as a litmus test for what could be the first step toward eventual merger and place all of our collective energies toward working together to secure a contract that will provide both SAG and AFTRA members the opportunity to qualify for health care and support their families. But both unions have decided to move forward with regard to merger and it is now up to us, the members, to get involved with all phases of what will be a very long, complicated process. Only with SAG member involvement will SAG, the institution, be able to shape what kind of union will serve our members with the strength and advantages SAG members have experienced for the last 77 years.

Although there are wonderful SAG events coming up in the next few weeks, I, for one, can only really concentrate on our negotiations. Not only will SAG be negotiating our TV/Theatrical Contract, we are also facing our Basic Cable Live Action and Animation negotiations, all to be negotiated in the next few months. SAG members are facing some of the most difficult times this union has faced in decades. This year may be the first time we’ve had so many members not qualify for health insurance, due to lack of SAG covered work, since the inception of our pension and health plans in 1960. With regard to my own career, I can’t think of anything else. Qualifying has become my main goal. This is the first year I’ve taken full advantage of my health insurance, and I cannot tell you how blessed I felt. I’ve never taken the fact that I’ve been fortunate to qualify for some level of coverage each year for granted. One of the reasons why I’ve volunteered 12 years of SAG committee and board involvement is because I’ve been so fortunate and wanted, no, needed to give back.

I hope your July 4 was filled with fun, good health and remembrance. I wish you the best during the upcoming Labor Day weekend. Take advantage of the time off. It’s well deserved. But let’s all be well rested, ready and determined to take on the many career/union challenges coming our way.

ATTEND W&W FOR
BASIC CABLE LIVE ACTION


On Tuesday, August 10, Screen Actors Guild will host two Wages & Working Conditions caucuses in Los Angeles for the purpose of hearing issues and concerns from the membership regarding the upcoming Basic Cable Live Action Agreement negotiations. Members who work this agreement should attend one of the two caucuses. Members of the Basic Cable Live Action negotiating committee and staff will be in attendance.

Please inform your fellow union members who work under the Basic Cable Live Action Agreement about these important meetings. All paid-up members in good standing may attend. Participation is limited only by fire department regulations. Please bring your membership card.

When: Tuesday, August 10, 2010
W&W Caucus 1: 2–5 p.m.
W&W Caucus 2: 6–9 p.m.

Where: Screen Actors Guild
James Cagney Board Room
5757 Wilshire Blvd
Los Angeles, CA  90036
*Parking will be validated

Performers who work this agreement and who are not located in Los Angeles and yet happen to find themselves in Los Angeles on the day of the caucuses are invited to attend.

ATTEND THE W&W
FOR TV ANIMATION AND
BASIC CABLE ANIMATION

On Monday, August 16, Screen Actors Guild will host a Wages & Working Conditions caucus in Los Angeles for the purpose of hearing issues and concerns from the membership regarding the upcoming TV Animation and Basic Cable Animation contracts negotiations. Members who work these agreements should attend this caucus.
 
Please inform your fellow union members who work under these contracts about this important meeting. All paid-up members in good standing may attend. Participation is limited only by fire department regulations. Please bring your membership card.
 
When: 6:30–8:30 p.m., Monday, August 16
 
Where: Screen Actors Guild
James Cagney Board Room
5757 Wilshire Blvd
Los Angeles, CA  90036
*Parking will be validated
 
Performers who work these agreements and who are not located in Los Angeles and yet happen to find themselves in Los Angeles on the day of the caucus are invited to attend.

DON'T MISS OUT
ON THE MOVIES

Last chance to join the 2010/11 Season of the Film Society: Hollywood Screening Series. Save money and see Hollywood’s latest blockbusters and critically-acclaimed releases at a fraction of the cost. For $90, you and a guest are guaranteed a minimum of 40 films for the remainder of the 2010/11 Season, as well as studio bonus screenings with cast Q&As.  Some of last season’s bonus screenings included The Hurt Locker, Precious, Nine and Inglourious Basterds.

Screenings are held at the Directors Guild of America Theater. Films shown to date have included Inception, Iron Man 3,  and Toy Story 3. Upcoming screenings are Salt and Animal Kingdom on August 6 and 7. 

The last day to submit your application for the 2010/11 Season is Friday, August 20.

For more information and an application, please visit the Hollywood Film Society online at SAG.org.


GOVERNOR TOUTS RESULTS
OF PRODUCTION TAX CREDIT

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced July 30 that the California Film & Television Tax Credit Program that was a part of last year’s budget agreement has achieved its desired goal of keeping scores of film and television productions in state. In its first year, the California Film Commission allocated $200 million in tax credits to 77 projects. This year, another 30 projects are set to receive an additional $100 million in tax credit allocations, which exhausts the fiscal year funding.

Screen Actors Guild continues to support the incentives program and we applaud its success at bringing more entertainment industry jobs to California. It benefits entertainment industry workers here in California, including SAG members and their families, while strengthening the state's economy.

“This is a terrific success and further reinforces the importance of tax incentives to the state economy. The positive effects of these tax credits echo throughout California and bring widespread benefit to the entire state," said SAG Manager of Government Relations & Policy Jenn Heater. "This is just the beginning of what we can achieve through the incentive program. By working together, we can bring entertainment and related industry jobs back to California.”


MEMBER PERKS

Your membership in Screen Actors Guild affords you great opportunities to show your card and save.

Union Plus
Are you hitting the road? You can rent a car through Union Plus and save up to 25 percent on car rentals every day. There are even special weekend-only deals up to 50 percent off. Click here  to take advantage of your union discount.

In need of a technology upgrade? Union Plus, in conjunction with Dell, offers a 10-30 percent discount to union members and their families on selected products purchased through Dell. For more information, call (877) 882-3355 and reference member I.D. PS16626766 or click here.

Get $500 for college. With college costs going up every year, it’s never too early to start saving. Open a new 529 college savings or pre-paid tuition account for your student 12 or younger. When the account reaches $1,000, apply for a $500 Union Plus College Savings Grant. Unlike loans, this is $500 you never have to repay! Apply for a $500 grant here.

SAG members now save 15 percent off on a new monthly individual or family wireless plan from AT&T. This offer is available to new and existing AT&T customers with a new two-year contract. To enroll in the program, complete the verification form found here and fax it, along with a copy of your SAG I.D., to (877) 667-0534. Be sure to reference FAN number 3508840. Questions regarding this program should be directed to (877) 290-5451.

The Parking Spot
Present your SAG card and receive up to 25 percent off regular rates at The Parking Spot airport parking. With convenient locations in Los Angeles, Atlanta, Dallas, Houston, Kansas City, St. Louis, Nashville, Austin, Phoenix and Orlando, The Parking Spot has a spot for you! For more information, clickh here or call Michael Kolln at (310) 980-4936.


http://www.iactor.org

SAG and AFTRA Chart
Course for Sept. 27

Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists will begin joint negotiations of the TV/Theatrical and Exhibit A Contracts on September 27.  These talks with management will represent the culmination of a multi-step process involving crucial feedback from members who work these contracts. Here’s where we stand, and where we go from here:

1. We have just completed the initial Wages and Working Conditions process, also known as the W&W. From coast to coast, Guild and AFTRA members and staff jointly held committee meetings and caucuses with the purpose of putting together proposals to be negotiated with the AMPTP, the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers.

2. All the proposals gathered from around the country will be taken and presented to the Joint SAG/AFTRA W&W Plenary Committee. This is a national committee populated by 26 members (13 members from SAG and 13 members from AFTRA). This committee is charged with the daunting task of reviewing and discussing each and every proposal received during the W&W process. With staff’s recommendations, it will create a tentative package of proposals that it can recommend to the Joint National Boards of SAG and AFTRA for approval.

3. The national boards of SAG and AFTRA will meet in joint session to debate and ultimately vote on the recommended proposal package sent to them by the Joint W&W Plenary Committee. Motions that give guidance to the chief negotiators and the Negotiating Committee will be approved at this time as well. After a proposal package is approved, it will then be exchanged with the AMPTP for their proposal package.

4. The negotiations themselves will occur in late September, as mentioned. If the negotiations result in a tentative agreement, then we will come to our final step.

5. The tentative agreement will be sent to the memberships of both unions in a referendum on whether to accept or decline the tentative agreement. This usually occurs within 30 days of the end of negotiations, during which time membership meetings are held in cities across America to answer the memberships’ questions and to explain the deal points.

“These negotiations won’t be easy; there are serious bread and butter issues at stake,” said Screen Actors Guild President Ken Howard in a letter to members in the upcoming summer issue of Screen Actor. “We are still recovering from a historic economic downturn and our industry continues to grapple with changes that have put pressure on all of us. But these challenges are all the more reason we must work together – and stand together – to protect actors and strengthen our future."

Board Receives Report
on Presidents’ Forum

At Screen Actors Guild’s one-day plenary in Los Angeles and New York on July 24, President Ken Howard reported to the National Board of Directors regarding the formation of The Presidents’ Forum for One Union – a joint platform with American Federation of Television and Radio Artists to facilitate development of a process that can lead SAG and AFTRA to form one autonomous union.
 
Screen Actors Guild’s contingent to The Presidents’ Forum will consist of six SAG members including President Howard as chair, Secretary-Treasurer Amy Aquino, and four additional members selected from the Guild’s SAG/AFTRA Relations Task Force. The forum will include a similar group designated by AFTRA, including AFTRA National President Roberta Reardon and AFTRA National Treasurer Matt Kimbrough.
 
President Howard said, “This is a positive step toward uniting SAG and AFTRA and good news for our members. The creation of a single performers’ union is overdue, and I’m pleased to be working with Roberta Reardon, who’s been such a champion of that goal.”

ADA group photo

First Row: Commission on Disability President Sam Overton and Los Angeles City Council Member Tom LaBonge; Second Row: Greater Los Angeles Agency on Deafness CEO Patricia Hughes, Executive Director of the Department of Disability Regina Houston-Swain, Executive Director of the Disability Rights Legal Center Paula Perlman, SAG member Geri Jewell, Rafer Johnson, Olympic gold medalist and founder of the Rafer Johnson Children’s Center, and SAG member and I AM PWD spokesperson RJ Mitte. Photo by Betsy Annas, City of L.A.  

Guild Marks ADA Anniversary in D.C. and L.A.

Screen Actors Guild commemorated the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act on July 26. President Obama hosted an event marking the date on the South Lawn of the White House with members of SAG in attendance as well as Adam Moore, SAG associate director of Affirmative Action & Diversity. Robert David Hall (CSI: Crime Scene Investigation), national chair of the Tri-Union (SAG, AFTRA and Actors' Equity) Performers With Disabilities Committee, spoke and introduced Obama.

In Los Angeles on the same day, SAG joined advocates and officials to mark the anniversary at Los Angeles City Hall. Led by Councilmember Tom LaBonge, the ceremony opened with speakers including Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, City Council President Eric Garcetti, Council members Tony Cardenas, Jan Perry and Bill Rosendahl, and City Attorney Carmen Trutanich, along with key leaders in the disability rights movement.

Following the ceremony, SAG Affirmative Action & Diversity hosted its inaugural “Dare to Be Diverse” screening with the film Sympathy for Delicious, starring Christopher  Thornton, Mark Ruffalo, Juliette Lewis, Orlando Bloom and Laura Linney. The film was written by Christopher Thornton and directed by Mark Ruffalo. A Q&A with the cast, including  Ruffalo, Thornton and casting director Heidi Levitt, was moderated by Ron Livingston.

“Disability rights are human rights and organized labor plays a critical role in addressing workplace discrimination faced by people with disabilities," Screen Actors Guild President Ken Howard said regarding the anniversary. "We are proud to continue to shine a spotlight on the contributions people with disabilities make to our lives and the challenges faced by those with disabilities in our industry.”

Signed into law by then-President George H. W. Bush on July 26, 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act protects people with physical or mental disabilities in employment and other walks of life.

conservatory panel

Conservatory panelists engage in lively discussion. Pictured, from left, are Joe Bays (moderator and conservatory member), Max Myers, Danny Goldman, Steve Zuckerman and Ron Sossi.

Members Find New Direction

During Conservatory Weekend

On the weekend of July 30-August 1, more than 400 SAG members took part in the SAG Conservatory annual Summer Seminar at the American Film Institute. This year’s theme, “The Right Direction,” had more than sixty workshops and featured directors of stage, screen and casting. The festivities kicked off with a panel discussion with some of Los Angeles’ best directors from the worlds of theater, television, film and commercials. New this year was the “Casting Master Class,” which put SAG members in the same room with a panel of casting directors for theater and commercials where they were able to get comments on their headshots and had the chance to audition. The weekend was a terrific opportunity for Screen Actors Guild members to be pointed in "The Right Direction" for their careers. The new Conservatory season kicks off this October. Sign up for only $25 here.

two voice lab sponsors

President/CEO of BSW Tim Schwieger and Key Accounts Manager for Sennheiser Robby Scharf represent just two of the many companies and individuals who contributed to the lab.

New Voice-Over Lab Opens

More than 300 industry professionals attended the June 25 opening of the SAG Foundation Don LaFontaine Voice-Over Lab in Los Angeles.

A crowd of prominent voice-over artists including Randy Thomas, Paul Pape and Don LaFontaine Legacy Award winner Joe Cipriano watched excitedly as Nita Whitaker LaFontaine and Foundation Board President JoBeth Williams cut the ceremonial ribbon.

Heartfelt words were then shared by members of the lab’s advisory board, many of whom had been mentored by LaFontaine, whose spirit inspired the creation of the educational and creative facility.

Visit sagfoundation.org for information about the lab and the non-profit SAG Foundation.

Poker Classic Provides Vocal Support

Major support for the Don LaFontaine Voice-Over Lab is in the cards this October 15, when the SAG Foundation Texas Hold’em Poker Classic brings friends, celebrities and professionals together for a no-limit tournament. All proceeds will benefit the voice-over facility. To become a sponsor of this event or to be a player, contact Steve DiMarco at golfonerth@aol.com or (818) 594-7277.

Giving is Easy

Donating your residuals to the non-profit Screen Actors Guild Foundation helps assist, educate and inspire the acting community. Bring your residual checks of any amount to any AFTRA-SAG Federal Credit Union office to be transferred to the SAG Foundation or simply endorse the back of your residual checks and send checks only (keeping check stubs for your records) to SAG Foundation, 5757 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 124, Los Angeles, CA 90036. You can also call (323) 549-6708 to make arrangements to have all your residuals automatically donated. Learn more about the SAG Foundation at sagfoundation.org.

 

FREE TICKETS FROM CTG!

Center Theatre Group invites SAG members to join them in the complimentary stand-by line for opening night performances at the Ahmanson Theatre and Mark Taper Forum in Downtown LA, and the Kirk Douglas Theatre in Downtown Culver City.

Tickets become available due to cancellations and no-shows, and they encourage enthusiastic SAG members to help fill the house on opening night. Seating is not guaranteed, but chances are very good that you will get a seat. It has been a rare occasion that they have had to turn anyone away.
 
Upcoming shows include:
 
The Glass Menagerie starring Judith Ivey (Mark Taper Forum) on Sunday, September 12, 2010 at 7 p.m.
 
Leap of Faith, a new musical, starring Raul Esparza and Brooke Shields (Ahmanson Theatre) on Sunday, October 3, 2010 at 7 p.m.
 
Randy Newman’s Harps & Angels, a new musical.  (Mark Taper Forum) on Sunday, November 21, 2010 at 7 p.m.
 
Next to Normal, the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical, starring Alice Ripley (Ahmanson Theatre) on Sunday, November 28, 2010 at 7 p.m.
 
They suggest arriving in the stand-by line an hour or two prior to curtain.

Insider tip! The above listings including other member benefits, bargains, and last minute deals are posted on the Local Members Benefits page of the Hollywood Division Webpage on SAG.org: http://www.sag.org/branches/hollywood/local-member-benefits

 

Mark Your Calendar

AUGUST  

Thursday, August 12 - Low budget contracts signatory workshops, James Cagney Board Room. 6-8 p.m. Reservation is required by visiting sagindie.org or calling (323) 549-6064.(Be sure to include name and e-mail address).

Tuesday, August 17– Performing Artists’ Medical Clinic of the The Actors Fund,  6-9 p.m., offers free medical services to low-income musicians, dancers, actors and other performing artists. Call The Actors Fund (intake line) for eligibility criteria and appointments at (323) 933-9244, ext. 32, or go to actorsfund.org for more information.

Wednesday, August 18 – New member orientation, The Actors Center, 10 a.m. Not just for new members! RSVP necessary. Parking will be validated.

Monday, August 23 – SAG/AEA/AFTRA present the 8th Annual Tri-Guild Ivy Bethune Diversity Awards, Colony Theatre (555 North Third Street Burbank, CA 91502), 7 p.m. Free parking available in the Burbank Town Center Mall. Attendance is free for members of the three unions. Please RSVP to LARSVP@AFTRA.com or (323) 634-8262. For more information please contact (323) 549-6646.

SEPTEMBER

Wednesday, September 1 – New member orientation, James Cagney Board Room, 1 p.m. Not just for new members! No RSVP necessary. Parking will be validated.

Friday, September 3 – Guild offices closed at 12:30 p.m.

Saturday, September 4 – Hollywood Holiday Host’s 6th Annual Labor Day Picnic, Camrose picnic area at the Hollywood Bowl (2101 Highland Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90068), 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Hollywood SAG members and their guests are welcome. Bring paid-up membership card for admission. Raffles and prizes throughout the day. Bring blankets and picnic lunches. SAG will supply sodas and water. Please NO pets or animals with the exception of service animals. This is a non-smoking area.

Monday, September 6 – Guild offices closed in observance of the Labor Day holiday.

Tuesday, September 7 – Performing Artists’ Medical Clinic of The Actors Fund, 6-9 p.m., offers free medical services to low-income musicians, dancers, actors and other performing artists. Call The Actors Fund (intake line) for eligibility criteria and appointments at (323) 933-9244, ext. 32, or go to actorsfund.org for more information.

Wednesday, September 8 – "Getting and Keeping Health Insurance," The Actors Fund, 1:30–3 p.m.. Monthly seminar for the entertainment industry and performing arts and visual arts communities who want to know their options for obtaining affordable health insurance and healthcare in the Los Angeles area. Participants will learn to use The Actors Fund’s healthcare access and resources website (ahirc.org) to learn more. Registration is encouraged. The Actors Fund, 5757 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 400.For more information, contact Aaron King at (323) 933-9244, ext. 38, or aking@actorsfund.org.

Thursday, September 9 - Low budget contracts signatory workshops, James Cagney Board Room. 6-8 p.m. Reservation is required by visiting sagindie.org or calling (323) 549-6064 (Be sure to include name and e-mail address).

Wednesday, September 15  – New member orientation, James Cagney Board Room, 10 a.m. Not just for new members! No RSVP necessary. Parking will be validated.

Wednesday, September 29 – SPECIAL NIGHT SESSION of new member orientation, James Cagney Board Room, 7 p.m.. Not just for new members! No RSVP necessary. Parking will be validated.

**SAVE THE DATE**
2010 National Membership Meeting
Sunday, October 24, 2010
Beverly Hilton Hotel
9876 Wilshire Boulevard
Beverly Hills, CA 90021
Time: 1-5 p.m.
1-2 p.m. Mixer, Committee Tables, Sign-Up for Speakers List
2-5 p.m. Meeting and Q&A

The above listings are subject to change. Check SAG.org for the most up-to-date information. If you’d like more information on an event and there is no contact information listed above, call the Hollywood Executive Office at (323) 549-6459.