LOS ANGELES - Hollywood producers and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists announced a tentative three-year contract deal yesterday that puts more pressure on a larger actors union to do the same and avoid a crippling strike.
AFTRA said its deal establishes higher fees for downloaded content and residual payments for ad-supported streams and clips, while preserving actors' right of consent to online use of clips containing their images or voice.
"This was a tough negotiation," Roberta Reardon, president of the 70,000-member union, said in a statement. "We focused on creating a framework that would allow union members to participate fully in the emerging new media marketplace."
The deal came after the second late-night session in a row since bargaining began May 7. The agreement involves a handful of prime-time TV shows such as "Curb Your Enthusiasm" and "Rules of Engagement."
It will last through June 2011 if it is approved by AFTRA's board at a meeting June 6-7 and then ratified by members.
The larger of the two actors unions, the 120,000-member Screen Actors Guild, was set to resume its stalled talks with the studios yesterday.
SAG is negotiating on many of the same issues, with the use of online images a key sticking point. The current contracts of both actors unions are set to expire June 30.
SAG represents actors in movies, TV and other media. The TV and radio federation represents, among others, actors, singers, announcers and journalists. SAG and AFTRA share 44,000 dual members. *