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Union Roundup: Karen Westerfield Wins Top Post at Local 706 Following MUAHs Guild’s Second Election

April 19, 2022 | By
Union Roundup: Karen Westerfield Wins Top Post at Local 706 Following MUAHs Guild’s Second Election

Suddenly, union elections are all over the news. Mostly, these news stories center around the question of whether to organize a workplace to begin with, and they’re currently popping up everywhere, particularly if your corporate name is “Starbucks” or “Amazon.” The ownership of said companies, in time-honored fashion, is not pleased. Sometimes, though, these... »

Union Roundup: As Workers at One Amazon Warehouse Unionize, Corporate Contradictions Still Abound

April 5, 2022 | By
Union Roundup: As Workers at One Amazon Warehouse Unionize, Corporate Contradictions Still Abound

“The garden of controversy must be continually cultivated. Otherwise, nobody knows you are alive.” That quote comes from a Republican governor in Florida known for hiring his own security force, attacking teachers, teacher unions, and Federal judges, and calling protestors “communists” — but not the current Republican governor. No, it was actually said by Claude... »

Union Roundup at the Oscars: Overshadowed by The Slap, Dune Editor Was Forced to Interview Himself Backstage

March 29, 2022 | By
Union Roundup at the Oscars: Overshadowed by The Slap, <i>Dune</i> Editor Was Forced to Interview Himself Backstage

And in the end, even with mixing in an open-handed slap to a presenter, the Oscars still just barely moved the needle on viewership, according to preliminary overnight ratings. Did more people watch than last year? Well, yes. Are fewer people still watching the Oscars than ever before? Well, yes. The “theme” of the show... »

Union Roundup: ASC Honoree Ellen Kuras’ #1 Rule for Being a Good DP — “Don’t Be an A-Hole”

March 22, 2022 | By
Union Roundup: ASC Honoree Ellen Kuras’ #1 Rule for Being a Good DP — “Don’t Be an A-Hole”

IATSE issued a statement earlier this week, officially decrying the Academy’s controversial decision to move forward with “non-live” award presentations in eight different categories — Film Editing, Make-up Hairstyling, Production Design, Animated Short, and Sound — with President Matt Loeb saying that “behind the scenes workers get little recognition as is, despite being the... »

Union Roundup: Disney’s Response to Florida Prompts Backlash as Covid Affects Busy Awards Weekend

March 15, 2022 | By
Union Roundup: Disney’s Response to Florida Prompts Backlash as Covid Affects Busy Awards Weekend

Here we’d intended to round out some of the mid-month kudos circuit coverage, particularly the VES Awards, which was notable not because Dune and Encanto picked up more craft and animation momentum heading toward Oscar night, or even because it was the first live VES show since the Before Times, but because it was... »

Union Roundup: Hollywood Stops Caring About Masks and Starts Caring About Ukraine

March 10, 2022 | By
Union Roundup: Hollywood Stops Caring About Masks and Starts Caring About Ukraine

This week, a quick dispatch between awards shows to take the temperature in various rooms, as L.A.’s traditional winter “kudos circuit” tentatively returns with a slight spring delay, in a world itself even more tentative than the notion of stepping into a room full of people without masks. And yet, that’s what we did... »

Union Roundup: Hollywood Comes to Ukraine’s Defense, Though Contradictions Remain

March 2, 2022 | By
Union Roundup: Hollywood Comes to Ukraine’s Defense, Though Contradictions Remain

There are a few Hollywood-specific items we could talk about this week, be it CODA taking the pole position for Best Picture after the SAG Awards, or IATSE Local 839 — the Animation Guild — having filed paperwork with the National Labor Relations Board to oversee a vote on whether workers on Adult Swim’s... »

Union Roundup: Why Joe Biden Is the Most Unabashedly Pro-Labor President Since FDR

February 15, 2022 | By
Union Roundup: Why Joe Biden Is the Most Unabashedly Pro-Labor President Since FDR

“Researchers have found that today’s union households earn up to 20% more than non-union households, with an even greater union advantage for workers with less formal education and workers of color.” The words, though, about the benefits of unions, come from the White House Task Force on Worker Organizing and Empowerment, comprised of 13 Biden... »

Union Roundup: Why Maltese Film and Stage Workers Are Taking Steps to Unionize

February 8, 2022 | By
Union Roundup: Why Maltese Film and Stage Workers Are Taking Steps to Unionize

Sometimes, remembering that the “I” in IATSE stands for “International,” it might be easy to think that all film work — or certainly shows with big stars headlining the project, headed for release via one of the studios or top streaming platforms — must happen within similar parameters, in terms of how people are treated.... »

Union Roundup: How Will Hollywood React to Unvaccinated Stars and Suppressive States?

February 1, 2022 | By
Union Roundup: How Will Hollywood React to Unvaccinated Stars and Suppressive States?

It’s been a week for unfortunate comments since our last column, perhaps made even more unfortunate because they weren’t entirely unexpected. In one instance, an ex-President talked openly about fomenting violence on the street should any investigation into the January 6th insurrection lead in his direction, as well as dangling quid pro quo pardons for... »