Directors Guild to Wait on Bargaining New Contract Until ‘Later This Spring’ Most Popular Must Read Sign Up for Variety Newsletters More From Our Brands

The Directors Guild of America informed members on Saturday that it has decided to hold off on new contract negotiations with the major studios until late spring, saying the studios have yet to resolve their key issues. Not ready for.

The guild has already signaled that it expects an unusually tough bargaining cycle this year. The current base contract is set to expire on June 30.

In previous cycles, the DGA has often met with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers before the expiration date to negotiate a new contract. But in a letter to membership, union leadership said it was “not in our best interest to begin negotiations well before the contract expires.”

“We will be working with the studios to schedule negotiation dates later this spring,” the leadership wrote.

The decision may allow the Writers Guild of America to begin its negotiations with AMPTP first. The WGA contract is set to expire on May 1.

The setting is important because DGAs have a reputation, among other groups, for being more accommodating in studios. Studios often sign a contract with the DGA and then try to use it as a template for deals with other top unions.

Allowing the WGA — which has a more combative reputation — to go first could avoid that dynamic. SAG-AFTRA is also beginning its negotiation period, as internal member meetings begin to build consensus on issues.

All three guilds are focused on expanding streaming’s outstanding formulas, as more and more content migrates to streaming platforms. The DGA told members it also focuses on wages, safety, creative rights and diversity.

“If the studios don’t fix these issues, they know we’re ready to fight,” union leaders wrote. The letter was signed by Head of Negotiations Karen Gaviola, Co-Chairman of Negotiations, Todd Holland, Co-Chairman of Negotiations, Jon Avnet and National Executive Director Russell Hollander.

Leaders said the decision to wait was made after “preliminary discussions” with the studios to see if they were willing to deal with the issues. The 80-member negotiating committee unanimously decided on Saturday to postpone the talks.

“It comes down to this: We are partners in this business,” he wrote. “This means negotiating a new deal that treats our members fairly and with respect… This cycle’s negotiations are about more than just negotiating a stronger deal for the next three years – they are about our It’s about setting the course for the future of the industry and that’s what we’re going to achieve.”

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