Now that United Artists has reached an independent agreement with the WGA that allows screenwriters to go back to work for the studio, Tom Cruise and Paula Wagner’s fledgling movie company has a slew of out-of-work writers potentially at its disposal. So, which studio will negotiate next? The Weinstein Co. received a proposal from the WGA around Christmas but has not yet begun any negotiations with the guild. In fact, it looks like Harvey and Bob Weinstein are playing a chicken game with fellow indie studio Lionsgate. Sources tell the Hollywood Insider that both companies are waiting for the other to make a deal, though Lionsgate has not received a proposal directly from the WGA. What is clear is neither studio seems all that eager to make a deal, preferring the AMPTP to handle those negotiations.
Of course, the AMPTP isn’t too keen on these deals either. They released the following statement today in response to UA’s agreement with the WGA: “One-off deals do nothing to bring the WGA closer to a permanent solution for working writers. These interim agreements are sideshows and mean only that some writers will be employed at the same time other writers will be picketing. In the end, until the people in charge at WGA decide to focus on the main event rather than these sideshows, the economic harm being caused by the strike will continue.”