Film and TV writers have voted to allow their union to authorize a strike if an agreement cannot be reached with producers, as a three-year contract is set to expire on May 1.
The move makes the possibility of a shutdown in Hollywood even more real.
Affiliated branches of the Writers Guild of America represent over 9,000 writers who overwhelmingly approved the strike. Ninety-eight percent of the nearly 79% of Writers Guild of America members who voted were in favor of a strike.
As the New York Times reported, industry writers haven't gone on strike in 15 years. The vote will allow their unions to push for a walkout when a contract expires at the beginning of next month.
The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, a negotiator for the studios, said the ratification of the strike authorization "should come as no surprise to anyone."
A statement said, "Our goal is, and continues to be, to reach a fair and reasonable agreement."
The last time the guild went on strike was in 2007. In 2017 a strike authorization was voted on and approved, but a deal was reached before the strike happened.
Hollywood executives were reportedly preparing for a strike by stockpiling scripts and preparing to produce more reality television series.
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