Hollywood Horror Stories Shared by Entertainment Industry Workers Inspire IATSE Strike Authorization
Most of us enjoy our favorite TV shows, blockbusters, and indie flicks without giving much thought to the backbreaking labor behind the slick images on screen. Since August 1, hundreds of PAs, technicians, craftspersons, artisans, and other film workers have been anonymously sharing their industry horror stories with Instagram account @ia_stories. In an effort to shed light on the dangerous and inhumane working conditions on big productions, the viral account may have just inspired a vote to authorize a nationwide IATSE strike.
What is IATSE? The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, Its Territories and Canada (try saying that five times fast!) is a labor union representing over 150,000 entertainment industry workers. On October 2, IATSE president Matthew D. Loeb said in his statement to members: 'We are united in demanding more humane working conditions across the industry, including reasonable rest during and between workdays and on the weekend, equitable pay on streaming productions, and a livable wage floor.' Two days later, 52,706 out of 53,411 casted ballots voted 'yes' to authorize a strike. That's 98.7% with 89.7% turnout! Depending on how producers respond to the union's call to negotiate, this could unfold into the biggest strike the industry has seen since World War II.
We've collected some of @ia_stories' sad and infuriating testimonies that have helped amass support for entertainment industry workers everywhere.