Home » The Writers Strike Won’t Automatically Make Movies Better

The 2023 writer’s strike over residuals from streaming services has for all intents and purposes shut Hollywood down. I support the writers on strike. For one I am shocked that they weren’t already getting paid for TV shows on Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu that they helped write. Secondly, the fact that this hasn’t been addressed until now is concerning.

The “joke” on the internet that I’m seeing most often is the “let them strike, then the quality of movies and TV won’t suck” mentality. First off, that’s wrong on a moral level. Second, do you think that the writers on strike are consciously thinking about their stories and writing future scripts that won’t be beneficial to them until after the strike ends? Spoilers they aren’t. According to WGA union rules regarding the strike “As soon as a strike is called, you must immediately stop providing writing services for any and all struck companies. You may not continue to write or complete writing started before the strike for a struck company, including making changes or revisions to literary material.” That’s the first rule for members. To work on a story in your spare time would be like getting time off only to come into work any way and not get paid.

There seems to be this idea that writers will be working on their TV show and movie scripts while on strike. Granted, screenwriting is different from novel writing as are the industries which house them. That said, writers need to write to keep their skills up. It’s much easier to fall off the horse than get back on it. If anything the writers not writing might make worse decisions for shows and movies if or when the strike ends.

There may be some in Hollywood who disagree with this sentiment. That’s fine. What I hate to see is people making light of the conversation with jokes that aren’t just untrue, but not helpful at all.

-Michael L. Bergonzi