Hollywood writers are headed for the picket line if they don't reach a deal with the studios by Oct. 31. Members of the film and TV writers' union voted by a 90% margin to authorize a strike if the standoff isn't resolved, the first such strike vote since 1988, the Los Angeles Times reports. At issue is the writers' belief that they are being shortchanged on home video sales and web distribution.
Contract talks between studios and the Writers Guild of America have been unusually contentious. In anticipation of a possible strike, studios have sped production of films and TV shows, stockpiled pilots for next year and lined up reality shows that don't require writers. The last writers' strike, in 1988, cost the entertainment industry $500M.