Teamsters union reaches tentative agreement for new studio contract

A new Hollywood Teamsters contract would cover an estimated 3,500 members of Local 399, including drivers, mechanics and animal handlers. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Teamsters Local 399, which represents drivers, mechanics and other Hollywood crafts workers, said it has reached a tentative agreement for a new contract with the major studios and networks.

The union announced Monday that the new contract would succeed a previous three-year deal reached in 2015. Details of the new agreement for film and TV work haven’t been released. Union members are expected to vote on the proposed contract in the weeks ahead.

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A new contract would cover about 3,500 members of Local 399, including drivers, mechanics and animal handlers. Contracts for location managers and casting directors — who are also part of the chapter — are negotiated separately.

The tentative agreement would also cover other local crafts workers in other unions, including electricians, plasterers, plumbers and utility workers who are employed in the Los Angeles entertainment industry.

The agreement was reached over the weekend, according to one person with knowledge of the negotiations.

“As usual, these negotiations were difficult and extended into the night; however, in the end, we were able to come to an agreement,” the Local 399 said in its announcement on Monday.

Another powerful Hollywood union has run into difficulties with its contract negotiations.

The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees is facing a rebellion from its Local 700 editors guild, which is arguing that the proposed contract with Hollywood studios and TV networks is flawed in several areas and doesn’t adequately address the effects of the streaming media boom on compensation and benefits.

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IATSE represents a different subset of Hollywood workers, including cinematographers, editors, script supervisors, set decorators and prop makers.

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