WGA Writers' Strike Roundup

The Writers Guild of America board of directors has begun its strike. We've got analysis on what that means, how it came to pass and what it would take to end the strike.

Check back to this page often for the most recent developments.

So, what does all this mean for you, the TV watcher?
Analysis: What a strike means for you »

Primetime will be status quo for at least the next few weeks, but beyond that the flow of completed episodes will depend a good deal on showrunners, the writer-producers in charge of the day-to-day work on a series. Just about all showrunners are members of the Writers Guild, and as such will have to abide by strike rules that bar them from making on-set changes to dialogue or anything else.
Showrunners talk about the strike »

The network late-night shows came back on the air Wednesday night -- perhaps you've heard about that? -- and it was perhaps the most hirsute couple of hours on television since Bigfoot had his own show in the late '70s.
Beards and barbs as late-night shows return »

On Tuesday night's (Jan. 8) broadcast of the 34th Annual People's Choice Awards, the head honchos decided to circumvent the need for writers and get the words straight from the honorees' mouths. The strategy involved traveling around the world -- from Palms Springs and Orlando to London and Sydney -- to tape acceptance speeches.
People's Choice Awards gives it go without writers »

News Headlines
NBC is blowing up its development process, doing away with pilots in most cases in an effort to save money.
NBC Grounds Its Pilots

Hollywood's striking writers, signaling a possible thaw in the three-month-old labor dispute, have agreed to drop two demands that studios have long viewed as non-starters.
Writers Drop Reality, Animation Proposals

Spurred by the employment contract signed by the Directors Guild of America, Hollywood's writers and the major studios agreed Friday to resume talks, hoping to reach an agreement that would end the nearly 11-week-old strike, according to several people close to the matter.
Writers, Studios Start Talking Again

The Directors Guild of America today reached an agreement with the major studios that will now put pressure on Hollywood writers to revive talks to end an 11-week-old strike that has roiled Hollywood.
Directors, Studios Make a Deal

Conceding that the current television season cannot be salvaged, four major studios canceled dozens of writer contracts Monday.
Studios Cancel TV Writer Contracts

ABC Studios has cut ties with more than 20 producers, citing "force majeure" brought on by the strike.
Producers Get Ax at ABC Studios

NBC says Hollywood's biggest party of the year is still a go; SAG says none of its star nominees will be attending.
Golden Globes: Will They or Won't They »

Wednesday afternoon, the organizers of the Golden Globes issued a statement about possibly getting a waiver to let striking writers work on the awards show -- thus ensuring a picket-free red carpet.
Writers, Globes Still Not Golden »

With their returns to the air only a couple days away, the network late-night shows are starting to book guests.
Letterman, Leno Start Booking Guests »

David Letterman's production company has struck an independent deal with the Writers Guild of America that will allow "Late Show With David Letterman" and its sister program, "The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson," to return to the air Wednesday, Jan. 2 with its writing staffs, according to a person familiar with the agreement.Writers Guild Makes Deal With David Letterman »

NBC late-night hosts Jay Leno and Conan O'Brien will return to work in January to ensure their non-writing staff still have jobs.
Late-night lights back on at NBC »

David Letterman's production company will pursue its own deal with the Writers Guild, possibly allowing the "Late Show" host to return to work with his writers.
Letterman seeks deal with writers »

Hollywood's labor dispute intensified Thursday when striking writers filed a charge against the studios, alleging they had not bargained in good faith.
Dec. 14: Writers file labor charge »

The latest impasse in talks means that pilot season could be in jeopardy, which in turn would play havoc with network lineups for 2008-09.
Dec. 10: Strike imperils pilot season »

After a week of negotiations, the big media companies abruptly ended talks Friday, and each side blamed the other for the breakdown.
Dec. 8: Writers, studios break off talks »

Negotiators for the Writers Guild and the studios returned to the table Tuesday, but they remain far apart.
Dec. 5: Talks inch forward »

A news blackout ended with word of a proposal by the big media companies, which the Writers Guild quickly derided as a rollback.
Nov. 30: Studios make offer, writers unimpressed »

If the writers strike ended today, Hollywood would not immediately return to its regularly scheduled programming.
Nov. 28: Strike hangover could last a while »

Writers and studio negotiators will return to the bargaining table Monday amid cautious optimism that the pickets and protests that have roiled the entertainment industry in the last three weeks might soon give way to labor peace.
Nov. 26: Writers, studios return to table »

Writers and studios agree to resume talks after Thanksgiving, the first sign of progress since the strike began.
Nov. 17: Talks restarting »

As the strike wraps its second week, studios have begun notifying actors that their deals are on hold.
Nov. 16: Strike starts to hit actors »

Four days in, pressures are mounting to get writers and studios back to the negotiating table.
Nov. 9: Agents meet with guild »

As TV and film writers and their employers dig in for a potentially long strike, production is grinding to a halt.
Nov. 7: Shows shutting down »

In their first full day away from their computer keyboards, the Writers Guild of America members scored several important victories. And those who are not on the picket lines -- primarily television's so-called show runners -- found themselves figuratively on the line, wrestling over whether to return to work.
Nov. 6: Writers get support on picket lines »

Last-minute negotiations on Sunday made no significant headway, so the Writers Guild began its strike early Monday.
Nov. 5: Talks fail, strike on »

Find out which shows would be affected, and how.
Nov. 2: How a writers strike would play out »

Leaders of the union representing Hollywood's film and television scribes declared Thursday night that they would go on strike in what would be the first walkout by writers in nearly two decades.
Nov. 2: Writers ready to strike »

Gilbert Cates, for one, says he isn't worried. Cates, who is producing the 80th Academy Awards show on Feb. 24 and must rely on a fleet of writers to get it done, says it's too early to start fretting.
Nov. 2: What about Oscar? »

With a strike deadline looming, negotiators for the Writers Guild of America and the major Hollywood studios made limited headway in contract talks Tuesday as they met for the first time with a federal mediator.
Oct. 31: Writers, studios inch forward »

While a writers strike would affect TV production almost immediately, given that most shows stockpile only a few scripts at a time, the movie business would have its own problems.
Oct. 25: As Writers' Strike Looms, Studios Rush To Lock Down Scripts »

The networks had estimated that a backlog of finished scripts and completed episodes would keep many series on the air until early 2008. But with numerous show runners refusing to supervise non writing services on their programs -- duties that include overseeing casting, editing and directing -- production has stopped on several leading series and new episodes of a number of shows will vanish around Thanksgiving. Read more

Here's a look at where many shows stand:

Says its soaps are written "well into the new year," however, and that they will "continue to produce original programming with no repeats and without interruption."
Expected to continue through February.
("Days of Our Lives")  
Expected to continue through January.
Syndicated Shows
Decided not to tape her show Monday in support of the striking writers. Some writers on her show are guild members. Monday's and Tuesday's shows were taped last week, a spokesman said. DeGeneres has yet to decide whether to go ahead with further shows this week.
Late Night
"Late Show with David Letterman"
Will go into repeats immediately.
"The Tonight Show with Jay Leno"
Will go into repeats immediately.
"Late Night with Conan O'Brien"
Will go into repeats immediately.
"The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson"
Will go into repeats immediately.
"Jimmy Kimmel Live"
Staffed with WGA writers, so it would probably go to repeats. But Kimmel could also decide to wing it and do the show himself.
"The Daily Show with Jon Stewart"
Will go into repeats immediately.
"The Colbert Report"
Will go into repeats immediately.
"Real Time with Bill Maher"
Will go into repeats immediately.
"Saturday Night Live"
Will go into repeats immediately.
Will remain live and in originals.
"Desperate Housewives"
Has nine episodes written, which should last through the first week of December. Production said to shut down Thursday.
"Grey's Anatomy"
Has 11 episodes of 22 completed.
"Ugly Betty"
Will have 13 out of 24 episodes completed.
"Boston Legal"
Will have 14 or 15 of 22 episodes completed.
Expected to have eight out of 16 episodes ready.
Midseason, none have aired yet
"Pushing Daisies"
Will have nine of 22 episodes.
"Big Shots"
Will have 13 of 13 episodes written. Shooting its ninth episode Nov. 7.
Expected to have 12 out of 13 episodes completed; has not received an order for a full season.
"Men in Trees"
Has five episodes left over from last season, 10 new episodes shot, four more scripts to shoot; adds up to 19 out of 27 for the season.
"Cashmere Mafia"
The premiere has been delayed because of the strike.
"The View"
Will continue uninterrupted, according to a spokesman.
"Dirty Sexy Money"
Expected have between 11 and 13 episodes completed.
"Brothers & Sisters"
Expected to have either 11 or 12 episodes completed.
"Eli Stone"
Will have 13 of 13 ordered. Midseason premiere date is undetermined.
"CSI: Miami"
Will have 13 out of 24 episodes completed.
"Criminal Minds"
Will have 12 of 22 episodes completed.
Expected to have 11 out of 12 episodes completed; has not received an order for a full season.
Expected to complete all 13 episodes; has not yet received an order for a full season.
Will have seven of seven episodes.
"My Name is Earl"
Has 13 out of 13 episodes completed.
"Law & Order: SVU"
14 of 22 episodes completed.
Will have nine of 22 episodes completed.
"30 Rock"
Has nine out of 22 episodes completed, with several days of shooting for the 10th episode scheduled for this week.
"Friday Night Lights"
Expected to complete 15 of 22 episodes.
Expected to complete 12 of 18 episodes.
Expected to complete 13 of 13 episodes; has not yet received an order for a full season.
"Everybody Hates Chris"
Expected to complete 22 of 22 episodes.
"Gossip Girl"
Expected to complete 13 of 22 episodes.
Has 10-12 episodes completed;
Those shows also have roughly five scripts that are ready to shoot.
"America's Next Top Model," "Beauty and the Geek" and new shows such as "Crowned" (the mother-daughter beauty contest)
Three of a number of reality shows that have already been ordered up, meaning they are covered for the rest of the season
Will have eight or nine out of 24 episodes completed. Originally scheduled for January, now premiere is delayed.
"Back to You"
Will have nine episodes completed out of 24 total episodes ordered.
Will have 10 of 13 episodes completed.
"In Plain Sight"
New show, episodes are nearly wrapped
"Psych" and "Monk"
Enough scripts in hand to guarantee a full second half of each season
"Law and Order: Criminal Intent"
Enough for first half of the season (10); the second half (12) will be affected (meaning not enough scripts to guarantee production start as scheduled.)
"Burn Notice"
Scheduled to start production of Season 2 in January
"Starter Wife"
Scheduled to start production in March
"Stargate Atlantis"
Expected to go on as scheduled.
"Battlestar Galactica"
Has 10 hours of episodes, plus a two hour movie to air this Fall.
Will be affected.
"Thirty Days"
Completed, not expected to be affected.
5th season, the 22 episodes were planned for two cycles: 14 to run from now to February and eight next year. All 14 in the first cycle have been written. So, only the second cycle could be affected.
"The Shield"
The final season is written, no date set for airing.
"The Riches"
Seven of 13 are written, reportedly good through Dec. 10
Production is underway, and it could be affected.
"Rescue Me"
Its fifth season, just announced, would be affected since production is expected to start in early '08.
No word yet on whether it would be picked up
"Entourage" and
"Big Love"  
Are currently in the writing stages and were scheduled to air in the summer of 2008.
"True Blood" and
"12 Miles of Bad Road"  
Have begun production.
"The Wire"
Completed and will air as scheduled.
"In Treatment"
New series will air as scheduled.
"Dexter," "Weeds,"
"Californication" and
Have ended or will be ending their season runs.
"The Tudors"
Second season returns in late March, completed production Nov. 1 on 12 episodes.
A new Tracey Ullman series
Five-episode series is shot.

-- L.A. Times
Copyright © 2018, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World