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October 16 2007

SAG charge made Fox stop the Buffy theatrical showings. MTV article says we've been speculating about the wrong union.

it does sort of seem that since the showings were SO successful, now new people want a piece of the pie. if it was just a few shows on the fringe they would have flown under the radar.
I don't know. Fox can certainly claim that it snoozed through all the publicity, including all the press about the showings in LA, until SAG woke it with a noogie. I'm a little skeptical, but I wrote the subject line in line with the article.
I wonder if the actors would demand payment.....
Well...interesting. SAG penalties. Sounds like that might be why the plug was pulled so hard.

SAG wants what it is entitled to, fair enough. Fox caught unaware is looking at big unexpected bill and doesn't want it to get worse, fair enough.

What disappoints me is that neither was in a hurry to communicate with the fans (the customers). It should be obvious to all parties that OMWF, BtVS, and Firefly are breaking new ground.
So it comes to an unexpected stop.
Talk to us.
We may be unhappy, but we'll understand.
We want the entire chain to make a fair profit so we can have more.
A "we have minor issues to work out, give us 30 days" or a "we have some serious issues to negotiate, it may be a few month or more" is better than leaving us to speculate.


Free kudos to the first party to issue a press release to the fans.

ETR grumpiness

[ edited by Loose Deckplate on 2007-10-16 03:30 ]
"Buffyokes"? Seriously?
The part about Criterion seemed a bit odd. From what the guys at the Alamo Cinema Drafthouse said, they'd been dealing with Criterion and I assume that, for OMWF at least, it was clearly a commercial venue getting a license for a show at which admission was charged. (I don't recall, but the Buffy marathon they ran for the 10th anniversary may have been a charity deal.)

I wonder if the actors would demand payment.....

Doesn't matter, it's a union thing. If it doesn't meet the union's criteria for waiving fees, the actors have to be paid.

Sounds like all involved are at least trying to work out the details, though.
"What disappoints me is that neither was in a hurry to communicate with the fans (The Customers)."

While it's frustrating I don't actually think we have any right to be kept informed. There's a business issue that FOX needs to work out with the various unions (SAG if this article is to be believed) and needs to sort that out. As a viewer I don't see why that allows me to be privy to the ins and outs of contractual disputes.
The part about Criterion seemed a bit odd. From what the guys at the Alamo Cinema Drafthouse said, they'd been dealing with Criterion and I assume that, for OMWF at least, it was clearly a commercial venue getting a license for a show at which admission was charged.

Yeah. As more and more of this comes out, it's looking to me like Criterion might turn out to be the actual weak link in this chain -- and not, despite the knee-jerk reaction here and elsewhere, Fox.

[ edited by theonetruebix on 2007-10-16 02:50 ]
"Their license agreement was to show it in certain arenas where admission is not charged, like... churches"

Haha, sorry, that's just funny. Churches?
My exasperation overwhelmed the good news that Fox said showings held for a charity event or a film festival are OK. So Yea.
I never heard "Buffyoke" before. The writer must have made it up while putting together the story.
Anyway, I think it's a case of people not believing that someone would go to a theater, see a TV episode and treat it like the second coming of "Rocky Horror". Once they saw they were really popular, at least enough to get press, they indeed looked into whether all the royalties were paid for. Since Joss knows about this now, I'm sure they'll come up with a plan to keep it going...as along as it includes a clause forbidding the use of the word "Buffyoke".
Haha, sorry, that's just funny. Churches?

Why is that funny? Churches sometimes run film nights and whatnot. Remember, the comment isn't about Buffy specifically, it's about what non-theatrical public performance rights are. It falls perfectly within the non-theatrical license which, apparently, was the only thing Criterion was supposed to be permitting.

ETA, because I'm having a problem with this quote:

"But the crux of it is that they granted me the rights to do the show, approved my bookings, and then the show just got too big and became 'theatrical,' at least according to Fox's rules."


This is kind of deceptive (by which I do not mean it was intended that way).

What appears to have happened was that Criterion was issuing licenses for theatrical performances when it wasn't supposed to be doing so. In other words it has nothing to do with the show getting so big it suddenly "became" a theatrical public performance. It always was a theatrical public performance, and apparently Criterion never should have allowed them.

[ edited by theonetruebix on 2007-10-16 03:00 ]
First, I was probably unduly grumpy in tone in my last post.

I'm not saying that we need to know the details.
I am saying that it would have been considerate if both SAG & Fox had said something to the effect of "Hey, we didn't plan for this. Give us a moment to figure this out so the screenings can continue. We'll let you as soon as possible."
And I'm not saying that the current behaviour surprises me, only that both could've done better by the people with the money.
I never heard "Buffyoke" before.

At the Alamo shows, that's what they call the non-musical bit they do between the lead-in episode and OMWF. They get two people from the audience to perform the Angel and Buffy lines from the "morning after" scene in "Innocence". It's even funnier when they get a guy to do Buffy's lines.
Well at least it's beginning to make some sense. And getting some press, which is always a good thing. There may indeed be no real bad guys here, just confusion over something that's never been dealt with before.
And as a working screen writer, doesn't Joss have to be a member of SAG? That would be some kind of ultimate irony, but also might work to the advantage of sorting this out.

Has everyone signed the petition??
"Remember, the comment isn't about Buffy specifically"

Why do you say that? It's a specific response from a Fox spokesperson regarding Criterion, McClung, Buffy, and the license agreement. And churches. When I read that, I instantly imagine a congregation on Sunday morning watching Buffy in their church clothes. Heh.
There may indeed be no real bad guys here, just confusion over something that's never been dealt with before.

Yeah, I don't know about this. Criterion simply must know the difference between theatrical and non-theatrical rights, and which they are allowed by Fox to offer. Either they don't know the difference, or they aren't actually looking at the requests for public performance licenses to make sure they are non-theatrical only.

And as a working screen writer, doesn't Joss have to be a member of SAG?

SAG = Screen Actor's Guild, nothing to do with screenwriting.

Why do you say that?

Because what they are referencing is the form of license all of their material has available via Criterion. It's not just "this is the license we offer for Buffy" -- it's the same for everything they do through Criterion. That was my only point. Heh.

[ edited by theonetruebix on 2007-10-16 03:20 ]
It occurs to me that if SAG and Fox weren't prepared for fans/viewers/people going to a theater to watch a TV show in large enough numbers to mean serious $, then they will hardly be prepared to consider the same people as the customer.

It also occurs to me that I am probably expecting Hollywood to act like a normal business. sigh.
Wm54 said: At the Alamo shows, that's what they call the non-musical bit they do between the lead-in episode and OMWF. They get two people from the audience to perform the Angel and Buffy lines from the "morning after" scene in "Innocence". It's even funnier when they get a guy to do Buffy's lines.

Sigh. It's always irritating when journalists foul up little details in a story that could be so easily verified with a minimum of fact-checking. Had the author bothered to take 30 seconds to do a Google search for web pages, news stories or blogs containing the term (total search results = ZERO), he might have known to double-check with his source. Sure, it's a little detail, but sloppiness like that calls the more important details into question, such as the SGA vs. WGA distinction.

Not to mention the fact that people may actually start using that bizarre term as a matter of course.
Oops, the author of the article was a female. *blushes in embarassment at her own sloppiness*
My bad bix, I knew that SAG = Screen Actors Guild, I think there's a SWG as well, which is what I was thinking of. And as for my "there may be no real bad guys here", I'm just hoping for the best, that this is at least partially the result of confusion, considering the convoluted rules & regs that govern how entertainment is distributed and who will profit from different forms of distribution/ exhibition.

I'm not so naive as to think that those at the top aren't trying to get their pound of flesh out of this. But if SAG is indeed the sticking point, I'm wondering .... how has this been handled re. the Rocky Horror screenings?

And again, has everyone signed the petition? :)
Well, I have, and I stand corrected about the origin of "Buffyoke"...
it comes from an article posted on June 30th from the KING TV website in Seattle. So, it seems to be pretty new.
theonetruebix, I don't understand your reasoning for putting all the onus on Criterion. Do you have personal knowledge of the agreements between them and Fox, or between them and the promoters and exhibitors?
Hmmmmm. Google search results for "Buffyokes" = 0. Google search results for "Buffyoke" = 415. To paraphrase Heylia from Weeds, "Bitch, I am on my knees corrected."
"Because what they are referencing is the form of license all of their material has available via Criterion. It's not just "this is the license we offer for Buffy" -- it's the same for everything they do through Criterion. That was my only point. Heh."

I guessed I missed that part of the article.
dreamlogic, I didn't read Bix's posts as putting the onus on Criterion. I read them as a counterpoint to the prevailing assumption that this is all the result of evil, greedy FOX being out to screw the fans.
I don't understand your reasoning for putting all the onus on Criterion.

It's just the way this seems to be playing out. Criterion "is a non-theatrical distributor of feature films licensed for public performance in the United States", according to their own website. Non-theatrical is just that: Libraries, private clubs, cruise ships, prisons, churches. For whatever reason, they've apparently been granting public performance licenses to theatrical venues/circumstances. That sure sounds, to me, a lot like there's an issue at Criterion.

Unquestionably, as still more of the story gets told over time, something might crop up to shift who appears to be the weak link in the chain. But what we have so far is pointing to Criterion.

I guessed I missed that part of the article.

The article is misleading. While the Fox spokesman refers to "it" (OMWF), the license he's referring to is your basic non-theatical license, which is the business Criterion is in.

[ edited by theonetruebix on 2007-10-16 04:00 ]
Criterion simply must know the difference between theatrical and non-theatrical rights, and which they are allowed by Fox to offer.

I can think of a number of ways a contract between Fox and Criterion could muddy those waters. For example, they might have been authorized to license occasional one-off theatrical showings. Or to license a single venue (whereas the sing-a-longs under discussion might appear to be a wider release). It certainly appears that the use for admission receipts matters since a charity fund-raiser seems to have been acceptable; maybe Criterion thought they were dealing with a non-profit. Without seeing the contract terms, of course, we can't know what might have caused the confusion, if any.
Edited out redundant post - darn those database errors. Anyone who can should just delete this 'un.

[ edited by Wm54 on 2007-10-16 04:06 ]
Oh, I really don't like that statement from Criterion about the theatrical/non-theatrical screenings. It was clear from the beginning that these were all theatrical shows in movie theaters. Criterion knew about all the bookings, that they were in theaters, that admission was charged. We started at the IFC Center in NYC, a movie theater, and the first show before we started this tour was in Chicago, at a movie theater, and Criterion's representative was there.

So, I had no idea there was any issue with the license, and until this week was not told that it was even a potential issue. Period.

Of course I understand SAG's position (or any other union's), and that everyone should be paid appropriately by the studio, and I agree. I certainly hope that quote about six figures isn't true - because we haven't even come anywhere near that kind of revenue. This isn't a hard-core film release or anything, it's just midnite shows that only play one city at a time. It's been successful, but filling the theatre for two shows a week doesn't really add up to big bucks.

As for "Buffyoke", that's always the phrase MTV has used. We never called it that. I think they just picked it up from the pre-show on-stage acting gag that we do. Did... Choke...
What about singalongs at conventions? Or would that only work if it's in a room where you don't have to show con membership to enter?

There has to be some way of working this out. I don't begrudge the stars getting residuals, but if the actors' TV residuals are in the small pocket-change amounts for syndicated showings to TV audiences bigger than all the OMWF singalongs combined to date, then how does the SAG come up with a six-figure amount that Fox owes? Sure, there's ticket sales. But TNT sells ad time for BtVS/AtS syndication. Why the huge bill?
What about singalongs at conventions?

Technically speaking that's a public performance in a non-theatrical setting. Technically speaking, anything beyond watching the DVD at home is a public performance.
"but if the actors' TV residuals are in the small pocket-change amounts for syndicated showings to TV audiences bigger than all the OMWF singalongs combined to date, then how does the SAG come up with a six-figure amount that Fox owes?"

My guess is the purpose was to get FOX's attention. If there is nothing in the SAG contract specifically about theatrical showings for TV shows then the whole issue is likely to require quite a bit of wrangling to determine at what level the actors should be compensated.
Buffy SingAlong's post is making me lean toward blaming Criterion, too, if they misrepresented their license to promoters and exhibitors. It would be nice if a representative from them would make a public statement. But we still don't know exactly what Fox agreed to. And based just on what I know of them as a fan, I'm not inclined toward trust.
But we still don't know exactly what Fox agreed to. And based just on what I know of them as a fan, I'm not inclined toward trust.

This sort of line continues to confuse me. We're talking here of 20th Century Fox Television, not the FOX television network. It's the latter that has routinely messed with us. The former has generally been fairly supportive.
The truth of the matter is, projecting a DVD copy of a TV series for a large public audience is prohibited to begin with. Asking people to pay for the pleasure is worse.

I doubt SAG will ever extract any money out of this for the actors involved, but they may put a stop to the practice, thus protecting the members of their guild for something they should rightly be compensated for.

TV actors are paid their salary and residuals for each and every screening of each episode of the show and possibly an amount for DVD sales. Even if there is a contingency for public showings, clearly the actors weren't being remunerated in this case.

It makes a lot of sense that this situation has arisen because of SAG - it's a much, much more powerful union than the screenwriter's equivalent (WGA).
Who does 20th Century Fox Television work for, the greater good? I tend to think they work for NewsCorp.
Oh, gee. Non-theatrical showings ... actors' residuals ... it's a real burden being right so often. :P
Who does 20th Century Fox Television work for, the greater good? I tend to think they work for NewsCorp.

This is a really simplistic view of the world. They may work for NewsCorp. That doesn't mean every body and soul at 20th Century Fox Television is a rabid clone of Rupert Murdoch. It was 20th Century Fox Television that let Joss shop around for a new home for Firefly, for example. They could have stood in his way. There are a number of ways they've been helpful over the years (some known, some not so much).
I didn't know that I had a simplistic view of the world. Certainly I've been ignorant of the way that Fox has been helpful in unknown ways. Especially since since they were unknown.
The problem, I think, with "Fox" (by which I could be referring to any part of the Fox Entertainment Group) is that it generates a very emotive response and is assumed to be guilty until proven guilty as soon as any issue regarding the television work of Joss Whedon is mentioned. Had Mutant Enemy signed a deal with Touchstone and similar events occurred in the years afterwards I assume we would all now be blaming Mickey Mouse for it.

I don't understand how big business works. I don't really understand how the various corporate divisions of the Fox Entertainment Group fit together and how they fit within the umbrella of NewsCorps. If it's anything like my employer, a huge collection of seperate public service institutions and organisations, often competing with one another, but generally assumed to be one single entity, I can only assume it does not work as a unified whole.
As I understand it the exhibitor of the sing-a-longs was
paying Criterion something for the showings.

One question that occurs to me is what is the difference
in price between a Theatrical and Non-Theatrical showing?
Anybody know ?

Secondly who handles theatrical showings for Fox since
it clearly is not Criterion?

[ edited by JDL on 2007-10-16 08:11 ]
That doesn't mean every body and soul at 20th Century Fox Television is a rabid clone of Rupert Murdoch.

Jesus, not even in jest man, please ? It's too early for images like that ;).

I think that's a good point alien lanes, as soon as we see 'Fox' we're predisposed to thinking the worst (with good reason in the case of the network). Maybe "20th" or "TCF" (or "Twen-Cen Fox", yo ;) would be better for the studio arm ?

And AFAIK, they've always been fairly supportive of Joss' stuff, given it as much of a chance as they realistically can (and he stayed with them through Buffy, Angel and Firefly so must have some time for them) so i've nothing particularly against them personally. That said, obviously they're still a large company so ultimately their bottom line is what matters to them and they never have our best interests front and foremost, s'just the way it is (which is why we're not owed any kind of explanation, even if it'd be nice - and probably even good business - to give us one).
I believe we were all cheering 20th Century Fox when they were trying to get other networks to pick Firefly and Angel after those shows were cancelled.
I look at the 20th Century Fox/FOX the Network situation like the new movie We Own the Night.

20th Century Fox is the good, upstanding brother, who can be wrong but has a general sense of loyalty and some understanding of justice; FOX is the seedier, coke-addled brother who blows off the rest of his family and genuinely doesn't give a shit about anything except for himself and his hot little girlfriend (Nielsen?).
I believe we were all cheering 20th Century Fox when they were trying to get other networks to pick Firefly and Angel after those shows were cancelled.

I believe we might all stop cheering them if they decided the comic books were making too much money, and they needed to revisit that contract, too.

That probably won't happen (knock on wood), and might be a silly example, but I don't think that the fact that they've tried to maximize their profits off of the TV shows in the past means that we have a relationship with them, as fans, and have to trust them.

And if people want to differentiate good guys and bad guys within the corporate entity, the legal department is doing this stuff. They've probably got little to do with the creative executives that Joss used to work with, if those are even any of the same folks now.
Looking for an upside in this- when the show DOES get up and running again, (and it surely will, for we are nothing if not a determined and hard-to crush fandom) people will probably start coming out of the woodwork to see it due to all the free publicity!

The video on that page was fabulous and made it all look so damn fun.
"I believe we might all stop cheering them if they decided the comic books were making too much money, and they needed to revisit that contract, too."

And if it turns out that Dark Horse never had the rights to publish the thing it'd be fair. As it is the comics seem on solid ground, with signed contracts with FOX while the singalongs were based on verbal agreements with an intermediary who doesn't actually seem to have had the rights to grant in the first place.
I don't understand how SAG is involved.
They are demanding royalties for something they don't own?
They don't own the Buffy characters/performance, Fox does, no?

Almost feels like a MIAA/RIAA deal here where they claim to be
collecting for the talent but the talent never sees the money.
"I don't understand how SAG is involved.
They are demanding royalties for something they don't own?
They don't own the Buffy characters/performance, Fox does, no?"

Well the main actors receive money (residuals) every time an episode is aired on TV (the extras won't and I've no idea about the guest stars but the regulars at least receive residuals) so they do have an ongoing interest. So if they earn for repeat TV showings why should they not also receive money from theatrical showings?
Yeah but is it normal for residuals to be paid to SAG which they then dish out to the actors or would the cheque usually come straight from the studio (20th Century Fox in this instance) ?

If the latter, why are SAG charging anyone when they're presumably there only to represent actors with a grievance ?

(genuinely asking BTW, i've no idea myself)
I think SAG is involved because it's their role to look out for their members interests and while none of the Buffy cast may have complained directly (though for all we know someone might have made a complaint) there's a point of principle here (payment for the theatrical showing of a TV show)which, if not covered by an existing contract, needs to be resolved in case this becomes more widespread in the future.
Gosh, a lot of postings since last night and I don't have time to read them all now, so sorry if this has been answered already, but the "Rocky Horror" screenings are different by the very fact that "Rocky Horror Picture Show" is a movie, not a TV show, thus was made under contracts with the various unions that included theatrical exhibition. The "singalong" aspect of it is irrelevant.

And not to further muddy the waters re: Criterion, but they do also do theatrical licensing as well as non-theatrical, and that's not unusual. I worked for a company whose business was primarily non-theatrical showings, but we also handled theatrical bookings, mostly for rep houses that were showing older films. My venue for CSTS has used Criterion to license discs for public showing when he couldn't get film prints in time for his showing.
This may explain a little more about the SAG issue.
According to Elaine A. Clark's career guide:

The Screen Actor's Guild (SAG) and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) are currently separate entities.

SAG handles all film. AFTRA handles broadcasting, news, soap operas, talk shows, audio tape, video tape, and disc jockeys.

Commercials on film fall under SAG's jurisdiction, while commercials on tape or digital equivalent medium can be under either SAG or AFTRA contract.


So I wonder if the problem may be more than residuals, maybe it's a question of scale and union jurisdiction.
Ah, so it's not completely clear who should even be involved ? Hmm, the more information that comes to light, the more this seems like a genuinely new situation that's caught all parties slightly flat-footed. Hope they resolve it ASAP.

(though for all we know someone might have made a complaint)

Could be, if not SAG are pre-emptively representing their members which makes them a pretty attentive union. Do they do IT ? ;)
i looked at one of the petitions, and unfortunately as always some signers are including alienating comemnts....
"I certainly hope that quote about six figures isn't true - because we haven't even come anywhere near that kind of revenue."

It's worth keeping in mind that Fox pulled *all* their shows from theaters in response to this, not just Buffy. Now, I do think it's possible that Buffy formed a large percentage of the theatrical showings of Fox shows (which might make the figures a bit high), but we don't really know that. It's also quite possible that Buffy only represents a slightly higher than average percentage (and thus that sort of a bill would make more sense).
Good point. But from the read, I think they were approached just about the OMWF shows, which caused them to pull the whole catalogue. Not that the other shows wouldn't count, they were just a little more under the radar. We've really been out there making noise all over. Then again, it could be for everything, or it could be a completely different amount up for negotiation. All I know so far is what the press has said.

And, yeah, I was going to point out that Criterion is not a "non-theatrical" distributor. They handle theatrical and non-theatrical for pretty much all of 20th Century Fox's catalogue product (ie, anything that isn't a new release).
My venue for CSTS has used Criterion to license discs for public showing when he couldn't get film prints in time for his showing.

That's odd, since I thought Universal's catalogue has handled by Swank.
The Washington, D.C., show (which played to an 800-person theater) sold out a week in advance, as did the San Francisco show (in a 700-person theater). Sing-alongs in New York; Chicago; Milwaukee; Minneapolis; Detroit; Denver; Tucson, Arizona; Austin, Texas; Kansas City, Missouri; Houston; Ann Arbor, Michigan; and Los Angeles also had full houses, with some cities (including Portland, Oregon, and Seattle) cracking the thousand-person mark.

Doing the actual math (using a ticket price of $15), it looks like a gate of $10k to $15k per showing. This lists 17 sellout cities. So we're talking and estimated $150k to $250k just from the sellouts before expenses (theater rental, whatever they paid Criterion, travel, etc), and the real number could be $100k more than that.

So while these numbers are estimates (doesn't count all cities, just sellouts, doesn't figure the lower ticket prices, etc), it is easily in the six figure range for gross revenue. Net? Maybe not.
I'd imagine that TCF is working up their residual figures from two things:

1) All of the showings so far, not just the upcoming ones.

2) Since this model is so new, they could be operating using a standard that is based on what would be charged on TV. It sounds like a lot of this is unknown territory, so the finer points have never been addressed.
That's odd, since I thought Universal's catalogue has handled by Swank.

I didn't say he got *all* his video licensing through Criterion. The title in question when I visited the theatre was "Young Frankenstein," a Fox film.
With regard to the "six figure bill" the article mentioned penalties. 2Oth may be on the hook for more than they received or the showings made. This would certainly get the studio attention, which could be SAG's objective.

Also, the residual model for film could/probably require payments that are much higher than for "TV work" another avenue that could present 20th with a bill that exceeds revenue.

As this is new ground, I would suspect that SAG has used the most actor-favorable interpretations in it's calculations. If there is room for a lot of renegotiation and if it's likely to have long-term new category effects, both sides will be trying to achieve the most favorable position possible.
@Saje:
SAG - Would that be the Sys Admins' Guild?
Imagine, on your next IT project you'd get scale, residuals, and a vote in the Oscars!
How much are the dues?
We started at the IFC Center in NYC, a movie theater, and the first show before we started this tour was in Chicago, at a movie theater, and Criterion's representative was there.

Buffy SingALong, if you have any sort of written contract with Criterion and you're out of pocket, personally, I'd go and speak to a few lawyers on a discuss-for-free basis.
MaryQue, my bad. I thought by "my venue for CSTS" you were saying they did for for CSTS itself. Heh.
This may explain a little more about the SAG issue.
According to Elaine A. Clark's career guide:

The Screen Actor's Guild (SAG) and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) are currently separate entities.

SAG handles all film. AFTRA handles broadcasting, news, soap operas, talk shows, audio tape, video tape, and disc jockeys.

Commercials on film fall under SAG's jurisdiction, while commercials on tape or digital equivalent medium can be under either SAG or AFTRA contract.


So I wonder if the problem may be more than residuals, maybe it's a question of scale and union jurisdiction.
Loose Deckplate | October 16, 15:17 CET


That quote is not really applicable here. You will notice it specifically mentions commercials. SAG also represents TV actors whose shows are filmed rather than broadcast live or put on video. I have no doubt SAG represents the actors on all the Whedon shows. I am also sure that this has, as a couple people pointed out, everything to do with making sure that actors do not miss out on a piece of the pie if it is going to become common for TV shows to be shown in theaters. SAG and AFTRA are already having to play catch-up to try to get a piece of the DVD sales. SAG will not want to fail to represent their members interests if those DVD's are now going to spawn theatrical showings. Oh, and SAG and AFTRA work together all the time. They have been talking about combining into one union for decades, so would not look to that for the problem.

I also noticed the word "penalties" and figured that was the reason for the amount of money they are looking for. If an employer does not pay the actor what is owes they are liable for penalties to give incentive to employers to play fair from the beginning. In this case I agree that it is probably also a negotiating ploy by the union.

As far as why the union would be demanding the money, they would be speaking on behalf of their members. That way the actors are not in a position of demanding anything from their extremely powerful employers who may never employ them again. The unions will also often be the one to hold a bond big enough to make sure that the actors get paid and/or transported home in case a company folds after it has taken a group of actors to the middle of nowhere. So the demand makes perfect sense.
MaryQue, my bad. I thought by "my venue for CSTS" you were saying they did for for CSTS itself. Heh.

No harm, no foul. My theater manager's a nice guy, and during my several visits between last year's CSTS and this year's, we spoke of many things ... including his licensing experiences with Criterion. I was getting an unreasonable quote from the Criterion rep regarding "Firefly" episodes, so I was looking for any advice in dealing with them. We showed "Done the Impossible" instead, which should tell you how that all worked out....

"Serenity," blessedly, was run from a 35mm print supplied by Universal.
"Haha, sorry, that's just funny. Churches?"

I want my church to be first! Our board president is a huge fan of all Jossian things. (We're Unitarian Universalists, where atheists and pagans are common.) OMWF could play in UU churches across the country! Our Wiccans could give classes. Our vampires could... wait, we don't actually have vampires.
Suzie,

Are you really sure about the vampires? Cause there are these rings that allow them to move about in daylight. And they could just be real careful about what they touch in a church. Remember that guy on The Office. He was able to still be out in daylight.

[ edited by Anonymous1 on 2007-10-17 02:25 ]
Geez NewCJ no need to be condescending. I was just trying to engage in speculation like everyone else.

That the Whedon actors are under SAG is news to me and good to know. Is this the case for all of the shows? The whole catalog was pulled. (I don't know. I live far away from Hollywood) If 20th's TV actors are usually under SAG, then great it removes a possible issue. It did not occur to me, nor did I mean to imply a turf war between the two unions.

The why of the union demanding money wasn't my point, the how (much) was. If there are no specific rules for this (I don't know) then it's new ground. The union will want to set precedent, create new rules, and maximize the members' position. The studio will to try to do the same for itself. While that is an issue between themselves, it could mean additional delay for us, the fans.
Loose Deckplate, I think all TV actors are members of the Screen Actors Guild. I think they have to be. Can anyone verify this?
You are correct ElectricSpaceGirl
"Geez NewCJ no need to be condescending. I was just trying to engage in speculation like everyone else."

Huh?!? Condescending? Sorry, I was just trying to be informative and not let us end up following a red herring into union territorial disputes. This was especially true because the territory of SAG vs. AFTRA is confusing even to actors. That is why there are documents like the one you quoted. As I said, the difference used to be live/video vs. film, but with digital I'm not sure how the unions are splitting the pie these days as I have been away from it for a while. I am pretty sure AFTRA still represents newscasters and such, I don't know if they have anyone else on TV anymore.

The rest of the post had to do with other things said by other people on the thread.
Anonymous1, you have a good point. My church doesn't have crosses because we're not Christian. So, that would make it an ideal vampire church. Sadly, we have no one who looks like Spike or Angel, however. (Just so that I stay on topic, I'm sure they would support a showing of OMWF.)

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