27. September 2023

SAG-AFTRA on Strike Over AI Proposal: Hollywood Conflict Heats Up

• SAG-AFTRA has gone on strike due to an AI proposal from Hollywood studios.
• The proposal suggests scanning background performers, paying them for one day, and granting the companies complete ownership over the scan, image and likeness.
• This is the first time actors and writers have gone on strike together in 63 years.

AI Proposal Sparks Conflict in Hollywood

The Screen Actors Guild‐American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) has gone on strike due to a proposed Artificial Intelligence (AI) usage by Hollywood studios that sparked conflict in the industry. A press conference was held on July 13th where Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, SAG-AFTRA’s chief negotiator, revealed the details of the proposal put forward by Hollywood studios.

Details of AI Proposal

The AI proposal suggested that background performers should undergo scanning, receive payment for a single day, and grant companies complete ownership over the scan, image and likeness. These companies would then have unrestricted use of this material for any project without seeking consent or providing compensation for it. In response to this proposal being labeled as “groundbreaking” by AMPTP, Crabtree-Ireland expressed skepticism about such an assertion.

Strike Ordered

SAG-AFTRA subsequently ordered a TV/Theatrical/Streaming Strike effective July 14th at 12:01am until a fair deal is reached with AMPTP. This marks the first time in 63 years that actors and writers have gone on strike simultaneously; previously WGA had issued requests to Hollywood Studios which included regulation of AI usage in their negotiations with producers as well as other demands such as increased pay rates and better working conditions.

Implications of AI Proposal

This proposed AI usage could potentially disrupt how films are made if implemented without proper consideration for actors‘ rights; not only would it violate performer’s right to be compensated for their work but could also lead to potential abuse if companies decide to use images or material without permission or consent from those involved in its creation process. The strike is reflective of actor’s concerns regarding these implications which need to be addressed before further progress can be made with regard to using AI within film production processes.


As tension mounts between SAG-AFTRA and AMPTP over this ongoing debate about artificial intelligence within Hollywood production processes, both sides will need to come together soon in order find a compromise that respects actors‘ rights while still allowing studios access to new technologies that make filmmaking more efficient and cost effective