The WGA is none too please with Carson DaDalyly right now. As most of you know, the Writer’s Guild of America is on strike, which means none of their members are allowed to work right now… and that has shut down a lot of movie productions, and TV shows, including late night talk shows that use writer’s to pen the monologues and jokes.
However, all is not united. Ellen DeGeneres aroused the ire of the Union when she made the decision to continue on with her show one day after shutting it down for the Writers Strike. She’s been called a lot of names by a lot of people in the WGA, and while I am certainly no fan of Ellen DeGeneres, it always amazes me how Unions use bullying and fear to keep their members in line.
Now another show is set to re-start shooting. Carson Daly’s “Last Call” is going to go back into production. It should be mentioned that Carson is NOT a member of the WGA nor is he using anyone that is in the WGA. This is not his fight, it’s not his union.
On top of all that, NBC announced that starting as early as this coming Monday, they’re going to have to start firing people (the non-writers) because there isn’t any work. Apparently this spurred Daly to decide to start shooting again:
Defending his decision to resume his show, Carson said in a statement released Wednesday that, otherwise, “roughly 75 staff and crew would have lost their jobs. “As a non-WGA member I feel I have supported my four Guild writers and their strike by suspending production for a month,” he said. “While I continue to support their cause, I can’t, in all good conscience, stand by and let that happen to the vast majority of my loyal staff and crew.”
Damn right. It’s all well and good to stand with some people in principle… but when that “principle” starts costing the jobs and livelihoods of OTHER PEOPLE, then it’s time to get back to your own business. Daly isn’t a WGA member, it’s not his fight, and there is no reason why 75 other people who have nothing to do with this fight should lose their jobs because of a fight that isn’t theirs. I say Daly is 100% doing the right thing. He showed his support for the WGA by going off air for a month… but now he has to take care of his people.
Still, the WGA has started attacking Daly… a guy who is not a part of their union and has no obligation to them. Sad.
Anyway, as most of you who read The Movie Blog know, I think the Writer’s are GROSSLY underpaid and insultingly under-appreciated by movie fans and studios alike. They deserve much more compensation and recognition than they get. I personally think they’re striking for the wrong reasons though, trying to perpetuate an ancient and flawed residual system that has proved over and over and over again doesn’t work and is systemically unfair to writers who do superior work yet get paid less than others who only gain success because of the work of other industries. It’s laughable that the writers for Transformers (which was a major success because of the visual effects far more than the writing) should stand to make more money than the people who wrote “No Country For Old Men” or “American Gangster”. But that’s an argument for another time.