Transcript: A Town Holds its Breath
Looking for signals and signs the WGA strike is inching to an end
Sean McNulty (00:04):
Welcome to The Ankler Podcast. This is Sean McNulty from The Wakeup newsletter here at The Ankler on Friday, September 22nd, specifically recording at 11:30 a.m. Pacific time, we should note. Elaine, are you in charge of keeping your eye on the inbox for any updates? Or can we designate... Can we count on you for that?
Elaine Low (00:23):
Yeah, absolutely. “Cautious optimism” is the phrase of the week here.
Sean McNulty (00:28):
Right. “Promising, cautious optimism,” right. The phrases that have come out of this, of course, talking about the WGA and AMPTP negotiations, which went up a notch of course, is Elaine Low. Peter Kiefer is back as well, and as always, the heir to the Fox Corp kingdom himself, Richard Rushfield. Richard, I had no idea you were Rupert [Murdoch]'s half brother. Which character were you on Succession? I didn't know this.
Richard Rushfield (00:50):
Yeah, I just like to be judged by my own accomplishments. I don't want the fact that I own a major studio to influence the way people treat me or look at me.
Elaine Low (01:06):
We're not getting eldest boy vibes from Richard here.
Richard Rushfield (01:08):
No, no. Just a working columnist.
Sean McNulty (01:14):
We'll see what you get in the will, Richard, but TBD. Elaine, are you heading out to the strikes again at some point after we record here, I guess, today? Is that just to see what the vibe is on this potential big day?
Elaine Low (01:28):
Potential, potential. Again, cautious optimism is the phrase that I heard over and over again when I was out on the picket lines on Thursday. I stopped by Warner Bros., very tentative, again, optimism that maybe because the WGA and the AMPTP have now been talking for... They're on their third straight day of talks now. And I also made a stop by Bob's Big Boy in Burbank, which is the local diner where Drew Carey is picking up the tab on all of the striking writer's meals. And he's run up a very impressive tab of somewhere between $400,000 and $600,000, the local manager tells me.
Sean McNulty (02:06):
Wow. All right. Did you get something?
Elaine Low (02:09):
I bought a strawberry pie, yes. A whole strawberry pie. I need it after this week.
Richard Rushfield (02:14):
So, a question from... What are the guardrails to keep writers, keep people from coming and ordering 30 burgers to go? Or...
Elaine Low (02:25):
The sense is people are honoring it. You come in, you show your WGA card, and then there's a cute little guest book at the counter where people are signing thank you notes for Drew.