A view of the famous "Hollywood" sign from behind, with the sun setting in the West. Illustration by Ben Wiseman for the New Yorker article.
Acting Various and Sundry Writing

Visions of a Post-Strike Hollywood

So, the actors’ union, SAG-AFTRA, approved a tentative agreement with AMPTP on November 8th, but the agreement has yet to be ratified by the membership and there appear to be a lot of questions about how AI is being dealt with (actors’ concerns being similar yet different in some important regards than writers). So I’ll plan to write something post-ratification (and yes, the presumption is that the agreement will be ratified).

But the ratification vote deadline isn’t until Tuesday, December 5th. What do you talk about over the Thanksgiving dinner table this Thursday? That’s where two recent articles, prophesying the future of Hollywood, come in handy.

The first article, “The Twilight of Prestige Television,” by Michael Schulman for The New Yorker, came out at the end of October, just over a week before the tentative agreement was reached. It’s an entertaining article, starting from the premise that Peak TV is over and mapping it into an understandable cycle of Hollywood golden ages, stagnant periods, and disruptors. All of this is illustrated in the outsize motivations of studio kings and creative upstarts, among other colorful characters that rival some we see on screen. He also takes in observations from writers like Peter Biskind, Brett Martin, and Maureen Ryan: all of whom have penned tomes on Hollywood history that give you potential reading material should you want to dive deeper.

The second piece, “The Post-Strike Future of Hollywood,” by Hanna Rosin for The Atlantic is actually for their “Radio Atlantic” podcast, so it’s really a discussion between Rosin and Atlantic writers David Sims and Shirley Li. You can listen to the half-hour long piece or read the transcript. As you might expect by the date and the title, this piece will scratch your itch about the immediate aftermath and what to expect as a viewer. All three have interesting questions, answers, and perspectives on how streaming may change.

Both pieces leave validate screenwriter William Goldman’s assertion that “no one knows anything.” Enjoy.

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