In 2005, the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) signed the Interactive Media Agreement, an agreement that raised the fee of videogame voice-over recording sessions. Will there be more on the table in 2008?
Michael Bell of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG), chair of the interactive committee for SAG, is lobbying to raise the session fees in 2008, battling it out for the residuals. Why in 2008? SAG and AFTRA will go back the bargaining tables at that time and reevaluate the outcome of the 2005 agreement with the videogame publishers.
Back in 2005, it was understood that if SAG and AFTRA wanted to have the recording session fees raised, they had to remove their request to receive residuals. Residuals are ongoing payments made to the voice actors, connected to the popularity or syndication of their voice acting work. In effect, the unions’ negotiating residuals would inspire the publishers to hire only non-union talent to provide voice acting services for their videogames as an alternative to paying union fees and subsequent residual payments.
To that, veteran videogame voice actor, Bell said, “No union actor, stars included, may work for a non signatory producer without facing disciplinary action from their union. They obviously want celebrities, so that threat holds no teeth.”
With 2 years to wait, only time will tell. Until then, read the full editorial here on GameDaily Biz.
Are any of you in this boat?