Video game voice actors and big studios tentatively ink deal to end 11-month strike
Almost a year ago, SAG-AFTRA issued a strike against a round of video game companies following a year and a half of failing negotiation on behalf of the voice actors in our games. Activision, Electronic Arts, Disney, and WB Games were just some of the largest studios selected as targets for the strike, which was at least ostensibly focused on better working conditions and proper compensation, in particular for residual bonuses based on the sales of a title. It got pretty dirty along the way as game companies launched a deceptive spoof guild website intended to confuse actors and acclaimed actors like Jennifer Hale called studios’ obstinance a “war on the middle class.”
Now it appears that strike will finally come to an end, as multiple sites report that SAG-AFTRA and the 11 companies have reached a tentative agreement as of last weekend. It still has yet to be reviewed and signed, but it’s looking likely, as the actors got most of what they wanted, including proper medical care, transparency about the nature of the roles they were being asked to take (if not about the games themselves), and a secondary payment structure based on the number of sessions worked for a game – not based on sales, as originally demanded.
According to Polygon, it was the longest strike in the history of the 84-year-old guild.