92.5% of guild vote in favor of strike’s end
“The strike is over,” Patric Verrone said, dispassionately but with the hint of a smile. “Our membership has voted. Writers can go back to work.”The WGA West prexy announced the news, something the town had taken as a fait accompli, shortly before 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Writers Guild Theater in Beverly Hills. Some 92.5% of the 3,775 ballots cast were in favor of ending the 100-day strike, with 3,492 members voting yes and 283 die-hards ready to tilt at the windmill of continuing the work stoppage that began Nov. 5.
The vote on lifting the strike concluded a mere three days after the WGA cinched its contract agreement with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers in the wee hours of a Saturday morning. The strike vote was held over a 48-hour frame, with members able to vote in person at the WGA Theater and at Gotham’s Crowne Plaza Hotel, or via fax.
After announcing the vote tally, Verrone said WGA members were free to go back to work “immediately,” and he noted that writers for the Feb. 24 Oscar ceremony were believed to be doing just that on Tuesday night. Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences prexy Sid Ganis and Oscarcast exec producer Gil Cates will hold a news conference Thursday morning to discuss their plans for the show now that the cloud of picket lines and stars staying home has lifted.