Writers Guild Faces Backlash for Failing to Condemn Hamas Attack | ET REALITY


Just weeks after the Writers Guild of America showed solidarity by ending a month-long strike and voting overwhelmingly in favor of a new contract with major entertainment companies, the union is being roiled by a fight over its lack of a public statement condemning Hamas’s attack on Israel.

On October 15, eight days after the attack, a group of scriptwriters signed an open letter to the Writers Guild asking why it had not issued a statement condemning the attack. They noted that other major Hollywood unions had issued similar statements. The letter now has more than 300 signatories, including Jerry Seinfeld, Amy Sherman-Palladino (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”) and Gideon Raff (“Homeland”).

He questioned why the Writers Guild had previously made public comments in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and the #MeToo reckoning, but remained silent “when terrorists invaded Israel to murder, rape and kidnap Jews.”

On Friday, 75 union members participated in a Zoom meeting to discuss what to do about the silence. Options included withholding dues until guild leaders convene a proper discussion on the issue with their members, according to a person who attended the discussion and spoke on condition of anonymity due to its sensitive nature. Other members are considering resigning from the union by applying for financial core status, in which they would pay reduced dues and continue to receive the contractual benefits of the collective bargaining agreement.

Later Friday, Meredith Stiehm, president of the Writers Guild of America West, sent an email to members who had asked about the lack of response. “Like the members themselves, the board’s views are varied and we find consensus beyond our reach,” she wrote in the letter, which was seen by The New York Times. “For these reasons, we have decided not to comment publicly.”

Calls to the union on Monday were not returned.

Jewish leaders have encouraged Hollywood’s biggest voices to speak out in favor of Israel.

“When celebrities speak out, they send an important message to their tens of millions of followers that this is the right side,” Jonathan Greenblatt, director of the Anti-Defamation League, wrote in an op-ed. published in The Hollywood Reporter.

“In light of how distorting social media algorithms can present the world,” he added, “it is even more important that these voices stand out.”

The writers union isn’t the only Hollywood organization facing fallout.

On Sunday, Creative Artists Agency announced to its employees that Maha Dakhil, the film group’s highest-ranking female agent, had resigned from the company’s internal board and was stepping away from her leadership role within the film group after posting inflammatory comments. she on Instagram she that she accused Israel of committing genocide.

Ms Dakhil apologized for her comments. According to an email sent by the agency’s CEO, Bryan Lourd, which was reviewed by The Times, she will continue to represent her clients, which include Natalie Portman, Tom Cruise and Reese Witherspoon.

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