Actors go on Strike against AI in Los Angeles
Actors go on Strike against AI in Los Angeles

New Delhi:- In the midst of the biggest film industry shutdown in more than 60 years, Hollywood actors have announced they will join a writer's strike. Nearly 160,000 artists will go out of business in Los Angeles at midnight, halting most U.S. film and television production.

The Screen Actors Guild (SAG) wants the streaming giants to agree to fairer profit sharing and better working conditions. We also want to protect our actors from being hijacked by digital replicas. 

Unions are seeking assurances that artificial intelligence (AI) or computer-generated faces and voices will not be used as substitutes for actors. As long as the strike continues, actors will not be able to appear in films or promote films they have already made.

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As a result, stars Cillian Murphy, Matt Damon, and Emily Blunt walked out of the London premiere of Christopher Nolan's Oppenheimer on Thursday night when the strike was declared.

The film's director, Christopher Nolan, told cinemagoers that they were "starting to write picket signs", adding that he supported their fight.

Actors including Better Call Saul's Bob Odenkirk, Sex and the City's Cynthia Nixon, and Hollywood veteran Jamie Lee Curtis took to Instagram to support the strike. Pickett started Friday morning in front of Netflix's California headquarters and then moved on to Paramount, Warner Bros, and Disney. 

To address concerns about the use of AI, major studios want to protect actors' digital likenesses and require consent if digital replicas are to be used in performances or altered so that they can devise what I call a “temporary proposal.”

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However, the union rejected an offer from the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP). Duncan Crabtree Ireland, SAG National Executive, and Chief Negotiator said this was unacceptable.

"They are proposing that we can scan our background performers and pay them a per diem and that their company owns the scans of their images and likenesses and can use them forever," he said. said. "If you think this is a groundbreaking proposal, I suggest you think again." 

For movies in production, the strike means that much of the work will be impossible. Even after filming is complete, the actors cannot participate in reshoots or other key elements of the filmmaking process.

TV shows that are still filming will also be postponed for the most part, though in some cases subcontracting agreements between performers and producers may allow filming to continue.

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Top Hollywood stars are not allowed to attend events promoting new or upcoming releases. Events such as the Emmy Awards and Comic-Con may be postponed or curtailed. AMPTP said the strike "certainly wasn't the result we wanted, because studios don't function without artists who bring TV shows and movies to life."

The union is officially known as the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA). Another requirement for the streaming service is that actors receive a higher base salary and residual compensation, which is the compensation they pay to actors from reruns of the movies and shows they appear in. Tens of thousands of actors are on strike, but they are paid significantly less than their high-profile colleagues for smaller roles.

"Older models give you residuals based on success," The Hollywood Reporter's editor-in-chief Kim Masters told the BBC. "With the new model, streamers don't share anything, so they don't know what's going on behind the scenes."

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SAG president Fran Drescher said the strike came at a "very important time" for industry insiders. "What happens to us happens everywhere when employers prioritize Wall Street and become greedy and forget the key contributors who keep the machine running," she said.

Another strike by 11,500 members of the Writers Guild of America has been going on since May 2 to demand better wages and working conditions. Some writers have turned to projects outside the scope of the deal between the Guild and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers.

It was the first "double strike" by both unions since 1960 when actor Ronald Reagan led the SAG long before he entered politics and became president of the United States. The actors' last strike was in 1980. "Unfortunately, the union has chosen a path that has created financial hardship for countless people dependent on the industry," the statement said. 

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At a gathering of industry leaders at an Idaho resort ahead of Thursday's SAG announcement, Disney CEO Bob Iger said the demands from both actors and screenwriters were unrealistic, He said it would hurt an industry that was still recovering from the pandemic. "I'm very worried," Mr. Iger said. “This is the worst time on earth for this chaos to grow.” A third union, the Screen Directors Guild of America, successfully negotiated a deal in June but will not participate. 

The Actors in Los Angeles have gone on strike against the AI worried that artificial intelligence will take over the voice and acting in the Film Industry.

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