Hollywood actors have joined writers on the picket line, resulting in a halt in new content creation from studios and streamers. This means that there will be no red carpet events or promotional activities for actors to attend, which is highly unusual during the summer blockbuster season. To illustrate this point, the cast of director Christopher Nolan’s feature documentary “Oppenheimer” left the film’s London premiere abruptly as news of the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) strike broke out. This sudden departure left Nolan to explain their absence, as actors Cillian Murphy, Robert Downey Jr., Florence Pugh, and others disappeared unexpectedly.
While this strike may prompt streamers to explore content from other countries to strengthen their line-ups, such as South Korea, which has gained global recognition following the Oscar win for the movie “Parasite” in 2020, it also means they will rely on reality shows and potentially conservative platforms for viewing options.
Some of these right-leaning platforms include Fox News, The Daily Wire, Blaze TV, various YouTube channels, and Angel Studios, a curated streaming platform known for the surprise hit “Sound of Freedom” this summer.
Christian Toto, host of The Hollywood in Toto Podcast, believes that the influx of reality shows will not be sufficient to meet the demand for new content. As a result, he expects right-leaning platforms to present original content that may attract a broader audience, even from the left-leaning crowd.
Toto suggests that recent films from The Daily Wire, such as “Run Hide Fight,” “Shut In,” and “Terror on the Prairie” starring Gina Carano, have had minimal or no partisan themes. Similarly, Blaze TV’s “Re-Opening,” its first original comedy, proves to be apolitical. The future holds more content from The Daily Wire, including a series of children’s programming free from woke themes as part of a $100 million venture.
Angel Studios, still riding the success of “Sound of Freedom,” recently released “His Only Son,” a profitable faith-based indie film. Their TV series, “The Chosen,” depicting the life and ministry of Jesus of Nazareth, has been one of the most successful crowdfunded TV series to date. The studio is set to release more movies, including the dystopian science fiction drama “The Shift” in December.
Within the realm of news and commentary shows, Fox News’ “Gutfeld1” has been a frontrunner among evening talk shows, especially since the writers’ strike began in May. It now stands as the sole comedy source on network TV critiquing the latest headlines.
However, it is important to note that the strike affects both creators and performers, regardless of their political affiliations. While conservative actors may be active members of SAG-AFTRA, the strike’s impact is widespread. For instance, the production of “The Chosen” had to halt during its fourth season due to the strike.
The strike by SAG-AFTRA comes after failed contract negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, representing studios. Despite the involvement of a federal mediator at the last minute, the negotiations collapsed on July 12. This marks the first SAG-AFTRA strike in approximately 40 years and the first time that both actors and writers have gone on strike together since 1960. As a result, studios and streaming platforms have already canceled or delayed numerous productions due to the ongoing strike by the Writers Guild of America East and the Writers Guild of America West.
Union representatives argue that changes in the industry, such as streaming and artificial intelligence (AI), have disrupted the traditional business model, leading to an urgent need for action. Fran Drescher, SAG-AFTRA president, emphasized the potential threat of being replaced by machines and big businesses solely motivated by Wall Street’s interests.
Disney CEO Bob Iger criticized the union’s decision to strike, calling it disruptive. The impact of the strikes on content creation will largely depend on their duration. If the Writers Guild of America’s strike continues for an extended period, studios and platforms will face challenges in finding fresh shows and films to deliver.
Jared Geesey, Angel Studios’ senior vice-president of global distribution, highlights the importance of content that aligns with people’s values. Despite the strikes, he believes there is a significant number of people dedicated to creating such content.
In conclusion, the recent strike by Hollywood actors has halted new content creation, leading streamers to explore alternative sources and possibly rely on reality shows and conservative platforms for viewing options. The strikes have affected both creators and performers, regardless of their political affiliations. The negotiations collapsed after failed contract talks between SAG-AFTRA and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. The strikes by both writers and actors have already disrupted numerous productions, leading to a potential shortage of fresh shows and films. Nevertheless, individuals and platforms remain committed to creating content that resonates with viewers’ values.