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SAG-AFTRA board approves contract for music video performers

July 21, 2012|By Richard Verrier
  • Music video performers hold a rally in Beverly Hills in January to support a union contract.
Music video performers hold a rally in Beverly Hills in January to support… (Ricardo DeAratanha / Los…)

The board of SAG-AFTRA has approved a landmark contract for performers who work in music videos.

The board, as expected, endorsed an agreement reached last month with the major record labels, including Warner Music Group and Universal Music Group, on a first-ever industrywide contract to cover dancers and performers who work on music videos.

Under the contract, which takes effect Monday, dancers who work on music videos produced by or on behalf of the labels would receive a minimum daily pay rate and health and retirement benefits. The contract also provides for 12-hour rest periods, wardrobe allowances and a binding grievance and arbitration process.

The agreement is the first major contract negotiated by SAG-AFTRA, which was created this year when the Screen Actors Guild merged with its smaller sister union, creating the largest labor organization in Hollywood: It has more than 165,000 actors, singers, dancers and other performers. AFTRA first began negotiations with the music labels in June 2011, but talks bogged down in January.

In other matters, the board opted to defer early negotiations with producers of commercials in order to allow more time for negotiators to review industry trends and data. Bargaining on a new commercials contract is expected to begin early next year. The current contact expires March 31.

SAG-AFTRA Co-Presidents Ken Howard and Roberta Reardon held a special moment of silence for the victims of the Friday attack at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo. that left 12 people dead.

“We are shocked and shaken by this tragedy and send our thoughts and prayers to the loved ones of those who lost their lives or were injured," Howard and Reardon said in a statement. "Theaters are the heart and soul of our art. It’s where people who love movies gather to share our stories, and in some undefined but meaningful way, spend time with us. That is a strong bond and we honor it.”


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