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Cinematographers, Art Directors Reach Craft-Specific Tentative Agreements With AMPTP as Editors Guild Bargaining Gets Underway

UPDATED: With negotiations underway for a new three-year Basic Agreement between IATSE and the AMPTP, the International Cinematographers Guild (Local 600)—the largest of the 13 IATSE Locals that work under this contract –and Art Directors Guild (Local 800, the third-largest) have reached tentative deals on their local-specific issues. Meanwhile, Motion Picture Editors Guild (Local 700) began its member-specific negotiations Thursday.

Local 700, whose members include picture and sound editors, is the second largest of the Locals that work under the agreement.

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Local 600 sent members a brief memo, which was obtained by Variety, announcing the news but without the terms of the tentative agreement. It reads, “We wish the remainder of the West Coast Studio Locals best of luck as they negotiate their local specific issues. We look forward to building on the success in the general negotiations, which this tentative Local 600 specific agreement will be part of.”

A statement from Local 800 president Nelson Coates and national executive director Chuck Parker posted on X.com confirms their tentative deal, also without details. It reads, “We understand that Locals 600 and 729 (Set Painters & Sign Writers) have also reached tentative agreements and to them we say, ‘Congratulations!’ We wish the other ten West Coast studio locals good luck as they negotiate their issues. Continuing to build on this success through the month of April is crucial as we will return to the table in May to negotiate for benefits and general terms and conditions of employment affecting us all.” Variety has reached out to Local 729.

This round of individual Locals negotiations began Monday and is scheduled to run though April 26. There’s still a long way to go before all craft-specific terms as well as weighty general terms (including the benefits plan and use of AI) of a new deal are agreed upon. The current Basic Agreement expires July 31.

Last week, Local 700 national executive director Cathy Repola sent a video message to members that was obtained by Variety, saying “We all keep hearing productions aren’t starting up here because of fear the IA will be going on strike. It is in our members’ best interest to do absolutely everything we can to reach an agreement that our members will want to ratify. I am razor focused on that end goal.”

In her message, she outlines Local 700 proposals, which she says were crafted with analysis of the Guild’s recent member survey results. These include “addressing staffing in the picture editorial departments, making improvements to the existing 19-21 consecutive days provision, adding additional time to the editors cut on series.

“In addition, we have proposed more days of work for daily hire sound editors and adding some language that calls for input from supervising sound editors on the ever-compressing sound budgets. We have two proposals to our story house agreement regarding the use of their personal equipment and a rate for performing research work,” she continues.

She cited several additional proposals in her message, including some involving hiring classifications and work from home stipends.

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