The DGA and AMPTP will enter into formal talks for a new collective bargaining agreement on November 4, 2013. According to a joint statement, the negotiations will be held at AMPTP headquarters in Sherman Oaks, CA under a press blackout. The DGA – which represents directors, assistant directors, UPM’s and technical coordinators – has often reached agreement with the studios in relatively short order once talks have started. Of the three major Hollywood above-the-line talent guilds, the one that negotiates first in a given contract cycle has historically set the unofficial “template” for agreements with the other two. In the latest round of talks three years ago, when the DGA again negotiated first, that template included 2% wage increases and language addressing new media programming and playback.
The WGA has the first agreement to expire, in May 2014, while the DGA and SAG-AFTRA contracts don’t expire until the end of June. Once an agreement has been agreed to by both sides, it will go to the DGA’s national board for review, and if approved will be sent to membership for a ratification referendum.