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This "blog" or "webblog" or "internetwebblog" or "interwebblognetwebblog" will feature the thoughts and observations of Late Show writers Eric Stangel, Justin Stangel, Bill Scheft, Steve Young, Matt Roberts, Tom Ruprecht, Jeremy Weiner, Lee Ellenberg, Joe Grossman and Bob Borden regarding the current writers strike.

There is a lot at stake with this strike and these are serious issues. The Late Show writers are on the picket lines every day they are scheduled. We are not making light of this situation. One way to get people to pay attention to the strike and its issues is through humor.
Best,
THE LATE SHOW WRITERS

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Friday, November 30, 2007

A JOE GROSSMAN CHRISTMAS
6:54 pm est

AN INSIDE LOOK AT THE NEGOTIATIONS
BY TOM RUPRECHT

As you may know, the writers and producers were back at the
negotiating table this week. While the talks were shrouded in secrecy,
a friend of mine on the inside agreed to give me a snippet of what
went on.

WGA REPRESENTATIVE:  All we're asking for is a small percentage of the
billions our work has made for you
.
STUDIO REPRESENTATIVE:  Go fuck yourself.

MODERATOR: I think we're making some progress.
6:41 pm est

Ineffective Picket Line Chant Of The Day
BY STEVE YOUNG
 
Heard outside NBC in Burbank:
 
“Hey hey, ho ho, anyone who writes jokes for Carson Daly is a crust which forms over a healing skin lesion!”
6:38 pm est

And Now- The Adventures Of Strikey!

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10:16 am est

1988 STRIKE MEMORY WITH LATE SHOW WRITER GERARD MULLIGAN
9:32 am est

PICKETING ERGONOMICS
BY BILL SCHEFT


 My longtime personal trainer, Rob Castillo (www.absolutefitnessnyc.com) was kind enough to send me this list of suggestions to decrease lower back, feet and overall physical discomfort while on a picket line. I pass these suggestions, and some of my own, along to help my fellow union brethren, and anyone else considering a job action, or holiday travel.
 
 ** Keep feet apart when walking or standing to ease pressure on lower back.
 ** Slightly squeeze your butt together for lower back support
 ** I said "slightly."
 ** Replace your shoe insole with a a softer sole, available at any Foot Locker.
 ** Make side deal with Foot Locker to publicize chain on lateshowwritersonstrike.com website and get a little personal strike fund going to ease pressure and increase support. None of the other guys have to know. You're the strike captain. Is anybody looking out for you?
 ** Hydrate with mineral water or, for more energy and fewer trips to the toilet, fruit.
 ** Okay, first of all, I tried the fruit thing. The other day, I pulled out a couple of tangerines on the line, and one of my own men, I think it was Lee Ellenberg, says, "Hey, Dr. Oz, have a donut like the rest of us." No, wait. Tommy Ruprecht said that. Lee called me "Nana" because I couldn't remind the name of the movie "The Flamingo Kid." I kept calling it, "Those Flamingo Boys." So forget the fruit. And that fewer trips to the toilet thing is crap.
 ** Loose footwear, headwear and light warm clothes increases circulation.
 ** Loose footwear available at any Foot Locker.
 ** Chin up and stomach in. Improved posture increases circulation.
 ** Heat patch on lower back or neck to keep warm and increase circulation.
 ** Speaking of increased circulation, I heard Joe Grossman's a big star in Austria because of that silly 8-second video on this site. He got $50,000 to show up at a mall in Innsbruck and wave this weekend. Does the strike captain get a taste?
 ** Relaxed, light breathing increases energy.
 ** How am I supposed to relax when I know Joe Grossman is getting fifty frigging grand for eight friggin' seconds?
 ** At the end of your picketing shift, elevate feet for 10 minutes to increase circulation,  ice your lower back or shoulder if sore, but if stiff, use heat.
 ** Cancel appointment with personal trainer because lower back and shoulders too sore and stiff.
 ** Start being much nicer to Joe Grossman.

9:12 am est

Thank you AMPTP.

BY BOB BORDEN

Thank you AMPTP

Yes, you read that correctly.  If it wasn't for this stupid strike, I never would have had time to clean my rugs.

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Tomorrow, I tackle that pesky tile grout.  (OH PLEASE LORD, I WANT TO GO BACK TO WORK!)

8:33 am est

Thursday, November 29, 2007

BILL SCHEFT'S STRIKE-RELATED DAVE-TYPE MONOLOGUE JOKE OF THE DAY:

Big news. Today, the AMPTP made a huge concession to the Writers Guild over the new media. Starting January 1, in any online video featuring David Hasselhoff, writers will be entitled to 3.5 percent of all food on the floor.

-Bill Scheft 

9:04 pm est

Giant Inflatable Animal Update

BY STEVE YOUNG AND JEREMY WEINER
 
As our blog has evolved, a few themes have established themselves as central to our strike experience.  Richard Belzer and his sandwiches…Strikey, the loveable WGA mascot…Alan Zweibel and his Thurber Award….and of course the giant inflatable pig and rat.
 
We’re endlessly fascinated by the picket line’s big inflatable animals.  Yesterday an examination of the label on the greedy pig determined that it came from Big Sky Balloons and Searchlights of Chicago.  Here’s their web page featuring strike-related giant animals:
 
Beware, AMPTP!  Give us the fair deal we demand, or we’ll be forced to deploy the Cockroach, Skunk, or Corporate Fat Cat! 

And if those don’t convince you, we won’t hesitate to use Big Sky’s other fine inflatables such as the giant Birthday Cake, Einstein, Panda Bear, or Golf Ball.

Don't think the Guild is limited to those choices. One click here and we are on our way to acquiring a 25ft. Blue Gorilla with Yellow Boxer Shorts.

You’ve been warned. 

8:12 pm est

THE STATE OF MY FINANCIAL WELL-BEING

BY TOM RUPRECHT

So one disturbing thing about being on strike is, umm, you don't get paid. I've been out of work for a month, and I have a mortgage. But am I panicked? No. You know why? Shortly before she died, I befriended 105-year-old heiress Brooke Astor. It turns out Lady Astor was what you might call a "cougar." In return for my "services" Lady Astor presented me with a Faberge egg and an original Monet. So I'm doing okay.

Oh, one other thing-- if Ivanka Trump happens to be reading this, give me a call.

8:02 pm est

WHAT'S IN PRODUCTION?

BY ERIC STANGEL 

HERE’S A LOOK AT HOW THE STRIKE HAS AFFECTED VARIOUS PROGRAMS

LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN- OUT OF PRODUCTION

SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE- OUT OF PRODUCTION

THE OFFICE- OUT OF PRODUCTION, RUMORS SAY NBC IS THINKING OF AIRING SECURITY CAMERA FOOTAGE FROM A SCRANTON ‘OFFICE MAX’ IN ITS PLACE

THE HILLS- LIKE TOTALLY OUT OF PRODUCTION

THE TONY DANZA SHOW- TECHNICALLY STILL IN PRODUCTION. TONY DOES A SHOW EACH DAY IN HIS BASEMENT

I LOVE LUCY- BACK IN PRODUCTION, ACTORS REFUSE TO SHOW UP TO SET

LAST CALL WITH CARSON DALY- IN PRODUCTION- SUCK ON THAT, WRITERS GUILD!

GREATEST AMERICAN HERO (OUT OF PRODUCTION SINCE 1983- HUGE MISTAKE)

DOG THE BOUNTY HUNTER- IN DESPERATE ATTEMPT TO GET BACK IN PRODUCTION, BLAMING WRITERS FOR HIS RECENT BIZARRE RACIST RANTS

24- PARTIALLY FILMED SEASON BEING AIRED AS NEW SERIES -“4”

7:59 pm est

My New Schedule

BY JUSTIN STANGEL

Since the strike was called, we have been picketing different sites around New York City. In Los Angeles, our WGA brothers and sisters picket almost every day. Unfortunately, back east we don’t do it as often. When Late Show was in production, we would work more than fourteen hours a day. When we are not picketing, my day is very different.

Late Show Production Day
9 am- 10 am- Read paper, work on topical comedy
10 am- 11 am- Read writers’ work, assign daily scripts, Pick Top Ten Topic
11 am- 12 pm- Work on Top Ten list
12 pm- 2 pm- General work on day’s show
2 pm- 3 pm- Rehearsal
3:30 pm- 4:30 Dave’s dressing room
4:30 pm- 5:30- Tape show
5:30 pm- 10 pm- Work on next day’s show

My day at home (a non picketing day)
9 am- 10 am- Play with baby (Ashley)- Dress daughter (Emily) and bring to school
10 am- 11 am- Clean basement because wife says, “it’s a good idea”
11 am- 12 pm- Clean garage because wife says, “it’s a good idea”
12 pm- 2 pm- General cleaning like picking up food kids threw on floor, cleaning dirty diapers, removing dirty diaper bag to garage.
2 pm-3 pm- Errands for wife, food shopping
3:30 pm- 4:30 reorganize my study because wife says, “it’s a good idea”
4:30 pm- 5:30- pick up toys thrown around the house because wife says, “it’s a good idea”
5:30 pm- 10 pm- Put both kids to bed, Try and watch some TV. Wife already there watching her dancing shows. Wait for her to be done. Fall asleep on couch.

7:38 pm est

WGA STRIKE CRAFT OF THE DAY

BY JEREMY WEINER
 
 If you’re a striking writer with kids, here’s a fun craft they’ll find mildly amusing.

HOMEMADE MINI PICKET SIGNS

SUPPLIES NEEDED:
 -          Paper towel tube
 -          White construction paper, 2 sheets
 -          Scotch tape
 -          Crayons

INSTRUCTIONS:
 1.      Tape together the top and sides of both sheets of construction paper.
 2.      Using the crayons, write the strike message of your choice on each side.

webassets/annasign2.jpg 

 3.      Insert approximately two inches of the paper towel tube into the opening at the bottom.
 4.      Tape the construction paper to the tube.
 It’s just that easy!

webassets/annasign.jpg 

7:32 am est

STRIKE UPDATE

BY ERIC STANGEL

Couple of days to recap here. Tuesday a rally was held in Washington Square Park. Many unions came together. I would say there were at least 2 million people there.

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Who was there you ask? Well, it was Tinseltown East for an afternoon! Who's that glamorous lady? Why it's Kristen Davis.

webassets/kristendavis.jpg

And that leading man? Mr. Tim Robbins.

webassets/robbins.JPG

Who's that below? Stand back ladies, GIlbert Gottfried is taken! 

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Hope you brought your autograph books- it's Danny Glover! 

webassets/glover.JPG

John Edwards gave a campaign speech- for some reason he thought he was talking to striking bus drivers in Akron. Close enough, John. We appreciate the support!

webassets/edwards.JPG 

And is that Curtis Sliwa? No! It's our own Guardian Angel, Late Show Strike Captain Bill Scheft

webassets/scheft.JPG 

Wednesday brought our first repeat picketing site- the Time Warner Center. Many many Late Show folks came by to lend their support. We are proud to call them our friends

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Thanks to the news outlets who have been mentioning our site. Today we appeared on the websites of USA Today and Entertainment Weekly

Also listen for some strike reports on Howard 100 news who was there to cover The Howard Stern Show's Artie Lang's appearance on the picket line.

webassets/artie.JPG

A few fun facts from today's picketing.  

The first time we marched at Time Warner Center two weeks ago, we walked in a counterclockwise direction. Today we walked in a clockwise direction. A WGA official who requested anonymity said "This is just the thing that'll bring those bastards at the studios to their knees."

Strikey the writers strike mascot was there. 85% of children polled said they like Strikey better than Santa Claus and 96 percent of adults say they like Strikey better than Ben Affleck.

webassets/strikey.jpgwebassets/STRIKEYLOGO.jpg

Strikey was featured in a piece on the Hollywood Reporter blog today. Check it out here 

Grabby the AMPTP mascot was also on hand at today's picket at Time Warner. An ugly incident occurred in front of one of Time Warner's high end stores as Grabby beat a Tourneau employee out cold with a picket sign reading "No Money, No Funny." Keep it together, Grabby.

webassets/GRABBY.jpgwebassets/grabbylogo.jpg 

Finally, thanks to out other friends who came by- like Gregg "Opie" Hughes from the wildly popular "Opie and Anthony Show"

webassets/opie2.jpg

And our pal Chris Elliott from the situation comedy "Fannies On Parade"

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12:19 am est

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

BILL SCHEFT'S STRIKE-RELATED DAVE-TYPE MONOLOGUE JOKE OF THE DAY:

The networks are furiously retooling their primetime schedules in case the writers strike continues through the holidays. Over at NBC, Carson Daly will be hosting his own three-hour special December 31, "Scabbin' New Year's Eve."

-BILL SCHEFT 

10:58 pm est

"Solidarity Rally Phrase That Pays" contest winner
Congratulations to Alisha Benchley of Cincinnati, Ohio for winning the lateshowwritersonstrike.com "Solidarity Rally Phrase That Pays" contest. Alisha came closest to guessing the number of times speakers at Tuesday's rally in Washington Square Park would use the phrase "greedy bastards" to describe the AMPTP. She guessed 192. The correct answer was 16. Alisha, you've won a picket line-worn WGAE strike jersey by your choice of Late Show writer (Sorry, Joe Grossman's already went for $10,000 at an online auction on eBayAustria) and two tickets to "Jersey Boys" whenever our stagehand brethen get a fair deal.
 
Thanks for playing. Keep an eye out for more contests on lateshowwritersonstrike.com. Remember, you gotta refresh it to win it!
 
-BILL SCHEFT 
10:55 pm est

I Have No Pride
BY STEVE YOUNG       
 
Week four of the strike, and both my morale and my bank account were starting to sag.  Then I discovered the magic of 2X Ultra Tide Liquid.
 
A long day of picketing can leave my clothes filthy.  2X Ultra Tide Liquid makes my whites brilliantly white and my colors vibrant.  It’s concentrated, so one small capful gets my whole wash Tide clean.  Hey hey, ho ho, dirt and stains have got to go!
 
And other than the tantalizing scent of new media residuals, there’s no fragrance more alluring than Original Scent, Clean Breeze, or Mountain Spring.
 
Whether you’re WGA or AMPTP, I recommend 2X Ultra Tide Liquid for all your laundry detergent needs.  And for you striking writers starting to feel the financial strain, I recommend selling out and getting a lucrative product endorsement deal like I did.     

10:53 pm est

Roadside Attraction

BY BOB BORDEN 

On a recent drive from Ohio to New Jersey, I was able to experience something I always wanted to do.  I stopped in Roadside America (122 miles west of New York City).

webassets/roadamerica.jpg

Roadside America is the world's greatest indoor miniature village.  Model trains, waterfalls, etc.  The whole exhibit measures well over 1500 feet.  It was truly amazing.  While I was walking around the models, I couldn't believe what I saw:

webassets/amptpstrike.jpg

Isn't that great?!  Everybody supports the WGA! 
Roadside America is located between Allentown and Harrisburg on RT. 22 & I-78 at Shartlesville, PA.

10:52 pm est

HOPE
BY TOM RUPRECHT

On behalf of all writers, I wish to thank delegates from Israel, Palestine, Syria and Saudi Arabia for coming to Annapolis today to resume talks with the WGA. We treasure our relationship with Hamas and Hezbollah, but we demand fair compensation for our work. Do you realize when a Hezbollah rant gets shown on the Internet, the writer responsible for the hate-fueled diatribe gets nothing? Imagine what your favorite jihadist screed would be without a writer to pen colorful phrases like "the streets will flow with the blood of the infidel". C'mon Middle East, the pie is big enough for everybody. Just treat us fairly!
9:12 am est

JOHN EDWARDS SPEAKS AT SOLIDARITY RALLY
JOHN EDWARDS SPEAKS AT SOLIDARITY RALLY by Lee Ellenberg

Presidential candidate John Edwards spoke at yesterday’s solidarity rally at Washington Square Park. 

The former North Carolina Senator and top-tier contender for the Oval Office cuts quite an impressive figure.  Here were some of the highlights of Senator Edwards’ visit:

-Watching him work the crowd with the grace of JFK, the charisma of Reagan and the populist appeal of Bill Clinton.

-Listening to him speak about the hopes and dreams of the all-too-forgotten middle class.

-Spotting him buy a dime bag of “purple skunk” marijuana from a dude named “Timo.”
9:09 am est

This has gone too far..

Mel Tolkin, Lead Writer for ‘Show of Shows,’ Dies at 94

-       New York Times, November 27, 2007

All right, AMPTP, now you’ve gone too far.

Over the course of this strike, you’ve been duplicitous and insincere.  You’ve said one thing in the negotiating room, and stated the exact opposite in the press.  You’ve been greedy and bullying.  You’ve failed to bargain in good faith.

Clearly, none of that behavior has worked.  A vast majority of the American public is aligned with the WGA.  You’re losing the fight.  So now, what has been your final, desperate recourse?

You went and killed Mel Tolkin.

You petty, murderous jackals.

If you think taking out writers one by one will destroy our morale or scare us into submission, I invite you to come to Columbus Circle today – between 10am and 2pm, near the inflated cartoon pig.

We’ll see who’s scared then, you disgusting, bloodthirsty tyrants.

This whole thing just got serious.
-Matt Roberts

9:04 am est

HOME WITH THE ELLENBERGS
HOME WITH THE ELLENBERGS by Lee Ellenberg
 
The following conversation took place between myself and an anonymous family member.  To protect the innocent, the person’s real name has been omitted and will be referred to as “Carl” in the piece that follows. 
 
Hint: He is one of my parents.
 
LEE
Hey “Carl,” you should check out the Late Show writers’ strike website.
 
“CARL”
When is it on?
9:02 am est

Here come the reality shows
BY JEREMY WEINER
 

HERE COME THE REALITY SHOWS 

As the members of the Writers Guild of America continue to strike, television networks have fast-tracked a number of new reality shows to fill holes in their programming schedules.  Here are just a few of the new reality shows coming soon to a television near you:


RASH – Mondays at 8pm on ABC

10 hip, diverse twentysomethings with ringworm compete to see who can be the first to get rid of the mild fungal infection.


UNACCEPTABLE DEAL OR NO DEAL – Wednesdays at 9pm on NBC

One WGA member must choose whether to accept a laughable new contract proposal from the AMPTP or continue striking.  Hosted by Howie Mandel’s cousin, Lou Mandel.


NOTHING BUT THE TOOTH – Fridays at 10pm on CBS

From the producers of Fear Factor comes this riveting new series in which teams receive root canals from unlicensed dentists.


TARKENTON NIGHTS – Saturdays at 8:30 pm on CW

Highlights from Fran Tarkenton’s previous night’s sleep.


ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 6TH GRADER?

FOX isn’t even trying.

8:55 am est

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

WORLD EXCLUSIVE VIDEO COMING....

In just a few moments, the LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com team will be uploading a world exclusive video. Tell your friends and gather 'round the computer...

6:53 pm est

What's the deal with Grabby?

BY ERIC STANGEL

Just got back from the spirited rally in Washington Square Park. I have to say, the number one question asked to me was "What's the deal with Grabby?"

Let me back up. For those who don't know, there is an adorable mascot looking to entertain children (and kids at heart), educate the masses and try to end this strike. His name is "Strikey." See below. 

webassets/strikey.jpgwebassets/STRIKEYLOGO.jpg

Thanks for the smile, Strikey. You make a tough situation just a little bit better. 

The AMPTP has a mascot of its own who appeared at the rally this afternoon in New York. his name is "Grabby." See below.

webassets/GRABBY.jpgwebassets/grabbylogo.jpg

A can of Bud and a lit match seem like a lethal combination, Grabby! 

Here are some quick facts about Grabby:

Grabby is not a nice fellow.

Grabby likes to hurt people.

Grabby loves new media- but is not interested in sharing the revenue.

Grabby once dated the lovely Carol Channing. Sadly, it didn't work out.

Grabby is one of those people who won't shut up about High School Musical.

Grabby was the last person to see Jimmy Stewart alive.

And that's the deal with Grabby.  

4:03 pm est

"Back To Work!"
10:01 am est

A thought about striking:

BY BOB BORDEN

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Picketing in front of my Mom's house in Ohio isn't really getting our message out to anybody.

9:49 am est

Writers Guild Rally Information

BY ERIC STANGEL

Important information for Tuesday WGAE New York

Received this from the WGAE.

WRITERS GUILD OF AMERICA
LABOR COMMUNITY SOLIDARITY RALLY

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 27

In a major show of support by the city's labor community, the WGAE is holding a massive SOLIDARITY RALLY on TUESDAY, NOV. 27TH.

The rally message is “We're all in this together, and we demand a fair deal!”

WHERE AND WHEN:
Tuesday, November 27th - WASHINGTON SQUARE PARK, southeast of the fountain.

12:00 NOON - 1:30 PM

Confirmed participants include:

Senator John Edwards
Tim Robbins
Joe Pantoliano
Sam Freed (SAG NY President)
The WGAE Dancers
A Guy Who Looks Like WGA West Executive David Young
Larry Rondo (Chairman of Washington Square Park Dope Dealers Local 203)
Leona Helmsley's Dog
Gilbert Gottfried
Ben Vereen (Not The Dancer)
Jimmy Finkelstein and Phil Pento ('Jimmy and Bonkerz In The Morning' on WFXX 99 The Fox FM)
One Of The Guys From That Soap Opera
Leonard Nimoy ('s cousin)
Strikey The WGA Mascot
Grabby The AMPTP Mascot
And More!!

8:52 am est

BILL SCHEFT'S STRIKE RELATED DAVE-TYPE MONOLOGUE JOKE OF THE DAY:

The hookers in Times Square, God Bless 'em, are now offering their "Writers Strike Special." It's $29.95, but if you let them make a DVD, they'll give you back four cents.

-Bill Scheft 

8:50 am est

IT’S A BOY!
BY JEREMY WEINER
  
LateShowWritersOnStrike.com proudly congratulates Thorsten and Hanna Norgaard,
two of our loyal readers from Denmark, on the birth of their adorable son.
 
And, we couldn’t be more thrilled with the name they’ve chosen:
 
LATESHOWWRITERSONSTRIKE.COM JORGEN NORGAARD
 
Isn’t that great?!  Here are the stats on the little guy:
 
Born: November 24, 2007 at Copenhagen University Hospital
Time: 1:06 a.m.
Weight:  8.5 pounds
Height:  21 ½ inches
 
Welcome to the world, little LateShowWritersOnStrike.com!
8:42 am est

Monday, November 26, 2007

Chris Elliott Visits The Late Show
8:01 pm est

BREAKING NEWS- EXCLUSIVE- THE AMPTP'S CONTRACT PROPOSAL
BY JOE GROSSMAN

Today, the WGA and AMPTP resumed negotiations, and inside sources say the producers finally offered the writers a contract that would pay us using a simple, straightforward formula. Here's how it works.

The pay-per-letter contract:

$0.00 for every use of the letters A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, R, S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, Z.

.0125¢ for every Q and anything with an umlaut.
7:54 pm est

NEGOTIATIONS UPDATE

BY BOB BORDEN AND ERIC STANGEL

Earlier today two men arrived at the WGA-AMPTP labor negotiations to help broker peace.

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That's right, former president Bill Clinton and Strikey the Writers Strike Mascot (pictured left). Looks like the negotiations are in good hands.

7:52 pm est

A THANKSGIVING TALE

BY TOM RUPRECHT

Thanksgiving dinner I found myself seated next to one of those sketchy "relatives"—a person you've never met before yet somehow insists you're bound by blood. And this woman was absolutely crazy (which actually increases the likelihood that she's related to me). Anyway, here's a snippet of our conversation—

Crazy Lady: So my father tells me your show is on strike?

Me: Yes, it is.

Crazy Lady: I had no idea. I don't watch your show.

Me: Yeah, it's on pretty late.

Crazy Lady: Seems kinda stupid to go on strike if no one knows you're on strike. I mean, I hadn't heard anything about it.

Me: Well…

Crazy Lady: It doesn't seem like anybody cares. (Inexplicable laugh) I'll tell you what would make people care. If "Grey's Anatomy" went on strike. Then people would care.

By the way, this woman is on her third marriage.

7:45 pm est

WHAT THE WRITERS WANT
11:11 am est

Upcoming Late Show Repeats
BY STEVE YOUNG

With the strike still in effect, the Late Show will once again air repeats this week.  The episodes are as follows:

Monday: OJ Simpson, Kid Dry Cleaners, performance by the cast of the Broadway musical "Kucinich!"

Tuesday: Michael Jackson, cooking demo with Ruth Bader Ginsburg, singer Ryan Seacrest.

Wednesday: Ayman al-Zawahiri, Identity Theft demonstration, standup comedian Barry Bonds.

Thursday: Stupid Senior Citizen Tricks, impressionist Kathie Lee Gifford, animal expert Mickey Rooney.

Friday: Pope Benedict XVI, Piedmont Tree Callers, magician Karl Rove.

Enjoy!
10:13 am est

WHY WRITERS MATTER
7:33 am est

INFLATABLES

BY JUSTIN STANGEL 

When I talk to any of my friends about the strike, they all ask the same question- “Where do you get the inflatable rat?” I have no idea. Where do we get the inflatable rat and the lesser-used inflatable pig?

When I got to the picket site the other day I asked many of the WGA people in charge. They pointed to a man sitting on the generator inflating the giant rat. He was smoking a pack of Marlboro reds and reading the Daily News. His name is Danny Brown, owner of “Inflatable Menagerie”- located in Queens, New York. I decided to interview him

JUSTIN- Hey, where does the inflatable rat go after it leaves us?

DANNY- Listen up funny man. Get the hell away from me before I beat you in front of everyone.

So that’s where we get the inflatable rat.

7:30 am est

Negotiation Ground Rules

BY STEVE YOUNG

The WGA and the AMPTP have agreed that Monday's negotiations will be governed by the following rules:

--Each side may bring one giant inflatable animal.

--No hot-dogging or show-boating.

--During the 15 minute break, there will be a musical performance by the National Labor Relations Board 's "Rappin' Mediator."

--The AMPTP must withdraw excessively unfavorable proposals if the WGA team chants "Hey hey, ho ho, corporate greed has got to go."

--Each negotiating team member must bring a covered dish.

--To determine the final internet residuals formula, the WGA will pick one of 26 silver briefcases held by models.

--The session will begin with an attempt to resolve a minor negotiating issue: the WGA wants to be able to sit at the table, while the AMPTP is demanding 100% of the chairs for themselves.

Let's hope they can settle this thing.

7:27 am est

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Strike Odds and Ends

BY ERIC STANGEL

Potentially a big week here as the two sides have agreed to go back to the bargaining table. What will be different this time? Well, rumor has it a few things. The backchannel efforts have possibly let each side establish some framework of what needs to be discussed- and i understand now that the weather has cooled off, Mallomars will be available on the snack cart.

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It doesn't matter which side you're on, everybody loves the delicious taste of Mallomars cookies- available for a limited time only. If you're a kid or a kid at heart nothing beats Mallomars cookies. Ask your grocer for Mallomars.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 

We in the late night comedy variety show business were the first off the air and that means film studios have not had the usual outlet to advertise their films. Well, we're about to change that tonight because with us now is the star of the upcoming film National Treasure: Book Of Secrets Nicolas Cage.

LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com: Welcome Nicolas.

NICOLAS CAGE: Thanks. 

LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com: Tell us about the film.

NICOLAS CAGE: I play a treasure hunter looking for hidden meaning in the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. 

LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com: Did you bring a clip?

NICOLAS CAGE: Yes, this is the pivotal chase scene.

(Roll compelling clip)  

LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com: That was something. All the money was right there on the screen. Thanks for joining us.

NICOLAS CAGE: I had fun.

I think that sold a lot of tickets. Look forward to more celebrity blog guest segments in the near future.

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We have gotten literally billions of emails about the LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com strike mascot Strikey.

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Let me address a few of the common questions

Q: What is Strikey?

A: A ball of some sort... with teeth.

Q: Where can I meet Strikey?

A: Strikey will be making many public appearances around the nation to help get the word out about the writers strike. Yesterday we reported that Strikey would be appearing at Best Buy in Woodbridge, New Jersey. We apologize. Best Buy double booked the appearance. Former Mets shortstop Rafael Santana was slated to appear so they ultimately asked Strikey to leave. Future appearances will be announced here

Q: Is Strikey a guy in a costume?

A: No.

Q: Is Strikey single?

A: Yes and available. Look for him on JDate.

Q:Where did Strikey come from?

A: According to legend, as talks between the WGA and AMPTP were breaking down, Strikey's spacecraft crash landed on Earth. If he can get the two sides to end the strike, news of Strikey will fill the airwaves and people on his home planet will know to come get him, and hopefully not take the Earth and enslave all humans when they arrive.

The Strikey action figure and spacecraft will be available in toy stores for the holidays. 

10:46 pm est

YOUR GUIDE TO A STRIKE CAPTAINS MEETING
BY BILL SCHEFT
 
Every Monday at noon, 20-25 strike captains, volunteers responsible for informing fellow Writers Guild East members of that week's picket sites and strike-related events, meet with Guild officials at the WGAE office on West 57th Street to discuss upcoming activities and potential strategies. The meeting lasts two hours. A light lunch is served.
 
Basically, there are three types of strike captains and at each meeting they offer three characteristic suggestions. (See if you can guess which category I fall into):
 
STRIKE CAPTAIN TYPE A: "What about something like 'Bring You Mom to the Picket Line Day?'"
STRIKE CAPTAIN TYPE B: "Sure, there's a little jail time, but what if we get a bunch of guys with airhorns down to the 'Sex and the City' movie set and shut those motherf*****s down?"
STRIKE CAPTAIN TYPE C: "Is there someone we can call next Monday to get the fruit salad without honeydew?"
7:15 pm est

Time Out New York Guest Column

Our own Joe Grossman has written a column about the strike for Time Out New York.

Check it out at

http://www.timeout.com/newyork/tonyblog/?p=2883 

Here's the text...

Strike myths and insider’s commentary

by Joe Grossman on November 21st, 2007

Writers strike updateI’m not a TONY staffer, but I used to be, before I was lucky enough to get hired as a writer for Late Show with David Letterman in 2004. And since the writers’ strike has thrown the entertainment industry into a tailspin (and also since I have nothing to do with my time), TONY asked me to enlighten its readers about the issues. So here are a few myths, facts and clarifications.

Claim: Nobody wants to see a bunch of spoiled millionaires picketing for more money.

Fact: True, some writers are extremely well paid, and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (representatives of the megacorporations we’re going up against) claims the average Writers Guild of America member earns a six-figure salary. But averages can be misleading. (As someone pointed out at a recent WGA meeting, you could put Bill Gates and a penniless guy in a room and accurately say the average net worth of people in that room is $28 billion.) The fact is that 48% of WGA members make less than the $31,000 a year necessary to qualify for health insurance—which they’ll need, after catching pneumonia from marching around with a giant inflatable rat in the cold and rain. 

Claim: The writers want to double their share of DVD revenue.

Fact: Let’s say you buy a DVD of your favorite hit movie for $30. The writer—the person who created what you’re watching—gets four cents. We’re asking for an astronomical eight cents, leaving only 2,992 cents left for the studio. Clearly, we’ve gone mad with greed.

Claim: The writers are demanding a 700% increase for paid downloads of their work.

Fact: Yes, we want a substantial increase, but only because we’re starting from practically nothing. (Imagine someone offered you a grain of rice for dinner, and you had the gall to request six more grains.) For every dollar you pay to download a TV show, the writer receives three tenths of a penny. We’re asking for about two pennies, leaving the likes of Rupert Murdoch to scrape by on a mere 98% of the revenue.

Claim: The writers are demanding a gazillion-percent increase for streamed content online.

Fact: Okay, the AMPTP hasn’t claimed this, but it’s only a matter of time, since it’s statistically true if you use the same logic as above. The studios pay us exactly 0% for shows that are streamed online, even though they’re collecting money from advertising inserted into the programming. For some crazy reason, we think a penny or two on the dollar might be reasonable.

Claim: Dude, for a bunch of so-called "writers," your picket signs suck.

Fact: Sadly, I have no argument there. But they don’t suck nearly as badly as our chants, some of which are almost awful enough to make me join the other side (I’m still cringing after hearing one woman repeatedly shout, "No McDreamy, no McSteamy till the writers get our greeny").

I could go on, but I’m not as knowledgeable, insightful or entertaining as many other people who are covering the strike on the Web (which, by the way, the studios claim isn’t profitable, hence the reason they don’t want to give us a percentage of the zero dollars they’re making online). So check out "Why We Fight" for a primer on the writers’ demands, "Voices of Uncertainty" to watch guys like Sumner Redstone brag about the killing they’re making on the alleged fiscal wasteland that is the Internet, and "Same Old Story" to hear an industry veteran talk about how badly writers have been getting screwed since he started his career, writing for the Marx Brothers in the 1930s.

And, of course, go to lateshowwritersonstrike.com to see what my colleagues and I have been writing since the strike began. It’s all the fun of the Late Show without the sharp-witted host, celebrity guests, millions of viewers, network production values or budget to pay anyone. Enjoy!

7:10 pm est

"GEORGE W. BUSH JOKE OF THE DAY"

BY TOM RUPRECHT

Because of the writers strike, many of you are hunrgry for some political humor. I thought I'd help fill the void by giving you an excerpt from my book "George W. Bush: An Unauthorized Oral History." Here's today's joke:

When George stood in front of Justice Rehnquist to take the oath of office, he saw the black robe and out of  habit immediately pled "Guilty" to drunken driving.--

Jeb Bush, Former Florida Governor

Tom's book "George W. Bush: An Unauthorized Oral History" is available on http://www.amazon.com/ and other quality bookstores

webassets/bushbook.jpg 

7:03 pm est

Holiday gift options for my nephews/niece if this strike continues:

BY BOB BORDEN

webassets/sand.jpeg

What kid wouldn't love a bag of sand?  END THIS NOW!

6:57 pm est

My Dad On Strike

BY STEVE YOUNG


My father, Peter Young, is a retired aircraft mechanic who worked for many years for USAir in Boston.  In 1992, his union, the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, went on strike against USAir for several days.  I asked him about his strike experiences.
 
“What was it like on your picket line?”
 “We just walked up and down on the sidewalk outside the USAir terminal at Logan Airport.  We chatted with sympathetic old ladies, and looked over the fence and laughed at the ramp workers struggling to hook up the towbar to the planes’ nosegears.”
 
“Did your picket line have any giant inflatable animals?”
“No.  Those may still have been in the future at that point.”
 
“Would you rather have had a giant inflatable rat or a giant inflatable pig?”
“Hmm, I’ve never really thought about it.  I guess probably the pig.”
 
“Did your union give you a free hat?”
“No.  The union didn’t give out a lot of free stuff.”
 
“A whistle?”
“No.”
 
“Did you have chants?”
“No.  I think we may have had signs.”
 
“I’ll start one of our chants and you see if you can complete it.  Hey hey, ho ho…”
“Uhh…I could probably figure something out eventually, but why don’t you just tell me how it goes.”
 
“We do “Hey hey, ho ho, corporate greed has got to go.”  Also “Hey hey, ho ho, management can’t write that show.”
“Okay.”
 
“Did Richard Belzer ever visit your picket line?”
“If he did, I’m totally unaware of it.”

9:50 am est

TOM AND JERRY

BY JEREMY WEINER 
My two-year-old daughter loves cartoons.   

Yesterday morning, we sat down on the couch together and I began flipping through the channels to find one for her to watch.

“Dora the Explorer?” I asked.

“I don’t want to watch Dora.” she said.

“Diego?”

“No.”

I switched over to the Cartoon Network.   Tom and Jerry was on.  She had never seen Tom and Jerry before.

“How about this, daddy?” she asked, sweetly.

“Sure, why not?” I said.

Her gaze was transfixed on the screen - Tom antagonizing Jerry, Jerry antagonizing Tom, you know how it goes.  She smiled with delight.   I used to watch Tom and Jerry all the time as a kid and it really made me happy to see how thoroughly entertained she was.

Until Jerry lit Tom on fire with a cigarette.  Not good.  Tom yelped in agony and leapt high into the air, his fur singed off and his flesh now beet red.  Jerry smiled proudly.

“Daddy, turn it off!  I don't like this show!” my daughter screamed, horrified.  "Now, daddy!"

I fumbled for the remote, pressed the power button and immediately attempted some damage control.

“Don’t worry, sweetie, the silly mouse was just pretending.”

“Uh…the kitty cat isn’t hurt, honey.  I promise.”

“We never light people on fire with cigarettes, right?”

“Right.” she said.  Then she leapt off the couch and bounded into her play room.  Clearly, I was more traumatized than she was.

Anyway, how does this unfortunate incident relate to the writers strike?

Tomorrow, leaders from the AMPTP and the WGA have mutually agreed to resume formal contract negotiations .  It’d be great if all involved can set aside their differences and work together to craft a contract that is fair for everyone.  I say to both sides: Keep the needless antagonizing to a minimum.  And, please, no lighting each other on fire with cigarettes. 

9:49 am est

Saturday, November 24, 2007

How The Strike Has Changed Me
BY JUSTIN STANGEL

I have never been involved in a strike before. For the last three weeks I’ve spent most of my time picketing. You show up, someone gives you a sign, you walk around in a circle, and chant. A group of young people, not sure who the hell they are, will march back and forth inside of our circle, yelling various chants.

Some are good, like:

“What do we want? Contracts!”
“When do we want it? Now!”

“If they get paid,”
“We get paid”

Some are just ok, like:

"No money? No downloads!”
“No downloads? No peace!"

“More Money,”
“Les Moonves”

“No money, No funny”

Some are terrible, like:

“No subtext”
“Until we get our checks”

The problem is, when I am walking around in my non-picketing life, and I have a problem I now feel the need to chant.

Last night, I went into Blockbuster to rent a movie. They didn’t have what I was looking for. I started screaming like an idiot:

“Why do you have 40 dvd copies of Pearl Harbor by Michael Bay”
“But no copies Live Free or Die Hard on Blu-ray”

I went to the gas station this morning. I filled the tank, and the credit card part of the pump didn’t work. I had to talk to the foreign guy behind the glass. I couldn’t understand a word he was saying through that little speaker. I yelled:

“2-4-6-8”
“Why can’t you enunciate?”

I went to the Gap:

“What do we want? New Gap khaki without the pleat.”
“When do we want it? Later today, please. I’m having dinner with some friends.”

Two mornings ago, in front of my neighbor’s house:

“Fuck you! Why do you have to run your leaf blower at 7am- asshole!”

What’s the point here? I don’t know. I really don’t know.

7:56 pm est

Perks of the WGA Picket Line
6:36 pm est

We're here to help

BY ERIC STANGEL 

We here at LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com are looking to do anything we can to help end the writers strike. After many hours of discussion, most of it heated, some of it lukewarm we have decided how we can help. 

To help get the word out about the strike and its issues, we have designed an adorable character, who market research has determined children love and adults are not creeped out by.

Ladies and gentlemen, we present to you Strikey The Writers Strike Mascot.

Let's see what Strikey has to say today

 webassets/strikey.jpgwebassets/strikey.jpgwebassets/STRIKEYLOGO.jpg

STRIKEY SEZ: "THE WRITERS JUST WANT 2.5% OF NEW MEDIA. LET'S GET A DEAL DONE!"

Thanks a lot Strikey. Hopefully a deal gets done soon. Kids, tell your friends about Strikey and you adults, continue to not be creeped out by him. Like us, he's just trying to help. 

STRIKEY WILL BE APPEARING AT BEST BUY IN WOODBRIDGE, NEW JERSEY TODAY FROM 3 TO 5 PM.  

11:25 am est

Friday, November 23, 2007

STRIKE BITES: POST-THANKSGIVING EDITION PART II

BY LEE ELLENBERG

Renowned writer and winner of the 2006 Thurber Prize for American Humor, Alan Zweibel, shares this lovely stuffing recipe which he swears was a huge hit yesterday with the whole family.

ALAN ZWEIBEL'S THANKSGIVING STUFFING RECIPE

INGREDIENTS:
several loaves of bread-toasted and torn into bite sizes
chicken broth or canned chicken broth
1-2 eggs
sage
poultry seasoning
onions and celery chopped and lightly fried in butter
salt and pepper

PREPARATION:
Combine all ingredients.
Mold into shape of Thurber Award.

9:41 pm est

Why We Fight

BY STEVE YOUNG

Why We Fight
 
I was one of the last people in the United States not to own a cellphone.  I’m just not that chatty, and ordinarily I’m at the office or at home or somewhere with my family.  My wife and teenage daughter have cellphones I could borrow on the rare occasion I needed one.
 
The strike upended my predictable routine.  Suddenly I was wandering around the city, marching on picket lines and attending meetings, feeding quarters into payphones to tell my wife where I was and what was going on.  And she couldn’t reach me.  So I decided to take the plunge.
 
This morning before the picketing started, I browsed at the Verizon Wireless store on 57th Street.  I picked up a phone and saw it was displaying a menu that listed “David Letterman.”  I pressed the button, and holy crap, literally a second later I was watching a comedy piece I’d written a couple months ago.    
 
I’d vaguely heard about TV shows on cellphones, but to see it for myself, well, it got my attention.  Is CBS making money from this?  I’m guessing they are.  Are the Late Show writers?  I’m certain we’re not. 
 
So we continue to fight for our piece of that pie.  And now I’m the proud owner of a shiny new cellphone that plays “promotional” videos of television shows.  I hope I can eventually make enough money to pay the phone bill.       

 

4:16 pm est

STRIKE BITES: POST-THANKSGIVING EDITION

By Jeremy Weiner

 

Looking to make the most of those Thanksgiving leftovers?  You’re in luck.  Check out the e-mail I received last night.

 

From: Belzer, Richard [belzapalooza173@gmail.com]
Sent: Thu 11/22/2007 7:40 PM
To: Weiner, Jeremy
Subject: great recipe!

 

Dear Jeremy,

 

I just whipped up some of these bad boys.  Thought you might enjoy the recipe.

 

RICHARD BELZER'S TURKEY PARMIGIANA SANDWICHES

 

INGREDIENTS

1 cup Ragu Robusto! Tomato Sauce

2 tbsp. olive oil
8 slices of leftover Thanksgiving turkey

¼ tsp. oregano

Salt and pepper to taste

2 tbsp. Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
4 slices Mozzarella cheese
4 rolls, split and toasted

DIRECTIONS 

1. In a small saucepan, over medium heat, bring the tomato sauce to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 2 minutes.

 

2. Preheat the broiler and line a broiler pan with foil.

 

3. In a large nonstick skillet, over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the turkey, the oregano, the salt and the pepper. Saute for two minutes per side. Transfer the turkey to the prepared broiler pan..

 

4. Spread each turkey slice evenly with one-fourth the sauce and sprinkle with 1/4 of the Parmesan cheese. Top each with one slice of Mozzarella cheese. Broil 4 inches from the heat until the cheese is melted, 10 to 20 seconds.

 

5. Place two turkey slices in each roll. Garnish with fresh oregano, if desired, and serve immediately.

 

Mangia!  See you on the picket line.

 

Richard

 

Thanks, Richard!  Keep those parmigiana sandwich recipes coming!

4:13 pm est

Thursday, November 22, 2007

BILL SCHEFT'S STRIKE-RELATED DAVE-TYPE MONOLOGUE JOKE OF THE DAY:
Earlier today, representatives of the AMPTP and the Writers Guild got together for Thanksgiving dinner. It was cordial at first, but then both sides walked away from the table after they started arguing over the reuse of gravy.

-BIll Scheft
9:22 pm est

The Year Without A Thanksgiving Parade Quiz
COMPILED BY STEVE YOUNG

For many years, the Late Show’s Thanksgiving episode has featured a parade quiz, with clips of parade footage and multiple choice questions.  The joke is always in the third choice, the “C,” but the straight A’s and B’s have an odd charm all their own.  Sadly, this year we're not writing the quiz, but here are a few choice Thanksgiving Parade Quiz A’s and B’s from years past.

“Do the elderly enjoy the parade?”

A city employee inspecting a balloon

An annual Thanksgiving favorite

Kermit the Frog has a timeless appeal

“I hope the crowds enjoy this float”

A high-spirited balloon handler

“Do parade volunteers have a spirit of camaraderie?”

Takes four hours to inflate

These characters are part of the harvest theme

Clowns are popular parade marchers

Steer the inflated characters

“Nice mild weather for Thanksgiving this year”

Contains over 40 cubic yards of helium

The parade assembly area was humming with activity

             Bonus!  Here are a few A’s and B’s from our Boat Show Quizzes:

“Where are the sailboats?”

A state-of-the-art steering system

Designs hulls

Some dealers had toy boats on display

The Boat Show attracts both young and old alike

This man knows a lot about rafts
8:46 pm est

Thanksgiving Reflection

BY MATT ROBERTS

For many, Thanksgiving Day means contemplating all the goodness in our lives.

This Thanksgiving, though, something is missing.

While celebrating today, take a moment to ponder a post-WGA-strike Thanksgiving in 2008 when we can all once again look forward to:

Humorous references to giblets

Double entendres involving wishbones

Gravy-related slapstick

and

The punch line, “That ain’t a turkey, but don’t stop stuffing!”

Happy Thanksgiving.  God bless us, everyone.

8:40 pm est

"George W. Bush Joke Of The Day"
BY TOM RUPRECHT

Because of the writers strike, many of you are hunrgry for some political humor. I thought I'd help fill the void by giving you an excerpt from my book "George W. Bush: An Unauthorized Oral History." Here's today's joke:

I'll never forget the first time I saw George. A mutual friend hosted a barbecue and wanted to introduce us. I immediately noticed his beautiful Armani slacks.  

Not only because they were so nice, but also because he was wearing them on his head.

--Laura Bush

Tom's book "George W. Bush: An Unauthorized Oral History" is available on http://www.amazon.com/ and other quality bookstores

webassets/bushbook.jpg

The book has become very popular on the picket line. Take a look
webassets/pigbook.jpg



1:10 pm est

Late Show Cue Card Boy Tony Mendez Explains The WGA Strike
11:07 am est

Picket Line Update: Sony Store
Tuesday the Writers Guild of America and its supporters picketed in front of the Sony Store on Madison Avenue in Manhattan.

It was nice to spend 4 hours walking in circles past windows full of items you won't be buying since you have no income.

Time moves differently when you're on the picket line. The best advice passed around was from fellow writer Lee Ellenberg who said "Whatever you do, don't look at your watch."

He's right. An example. Here's a photo taken of a nearby clock.
webassets/HPIM4494.jpg

After 45 minutes, I took another photo of the clock.
webassets/HPIM4496.jpg
How is that possible?

More staffers came out to support us. Thanks to them.

webassets/mendez.jpgwebassets/shecky.jpg

Chris Elliott was there too. He seemed to be under the impression that if you came out to march, you might win something.
webassets/chriselliott2.jpg
Late Show director Jerry Foley marched with us and then shot some pieces which we will be putting up on the site.
webassets/foley.jpg

Congratulations to Joan Coles- our winner of the "You Write The Caption" contest. She captioned the photo below simply "Strikebrella"
webassets/strikebrella.jpg
For winning, Joan gets to picket with the Late Show writers at a location to be determined and will have her photo taken with one member of her choice of the WGA Negotiating Committee

No picketing again until Tuesday. Talks resume on Monday. Let's hope this comes to a resolution soon...
-Eric Stangel


10:50 am est

New Friends In The Writing Community
BY STEVE YOUNG
A silver lining of this dark, ominous strike cloud has been the chance to meet and chat with other writers on the picket line.  Here are a few of the talented writers I’ve enjoyed getting to know:

--Maureen Johnson, writer for the daytime drama “Hidden Valley Ranch”

--Mitch Brooks, writer for the sitcom “Don’t Touch Grandpa!”

--Tanya Henrick, writer for the teen drama “Totally Whatever, Honolulu”

--Dan Grunwald, late night comedy-variety writer, “Still Awake with Mike Tyson”

--Paul Oakley, screenwriter, “High Speed Chase 2: Kaboom”

--Stacy Opouloupoulous, writer for the legal drama “Jury Selection”

--Barry Michaels, screenwriter, “Barky The Dog’s Improbable Adventure”

--Kevin Porter, writer for the medical drama “Nut Allergy Specialist, M.D.”

--Bob Montoya, writer for the sitcom “Bloomberg”

--Evan Zorbowski, writer for the sci-fi drama “Space War Conscientious Objectors”

--Danielle Wood, writer for the police drama “Crime Scene Tape Squad”

--Charlotte LaBeurre, screenwriter, “Teacup Full Of Feelings”
 
--Vicky Fellows, writer for the sitcom “The Laughtrack Family”

I’m proud to be in the business with you guys!
10:10 am est

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

BILL SCHEFT'S STRIKE-RELATED DAVE-TYPE MONOLOGUE JOKE OF THE DAY:


The collateral damage from the strike keeps building. Yesterday on the picket line, the writers chanted "Hey, hey, ho, ho..." and Don Imus got fired again.

-Bill Scheft

5:42 pm est

Putting his money where his mouth is.
BY BOB BORDEN

Congratulations to WGA East President Michael Winship.  At a recent WGAE meeting, Michael revealed his incredible commitment to this important cause.

webassets/WINNNNN.jpg
WGA East President Michael Winship shows off his Strike Rat tattoo.

Way to go, Michael!
5:35 pm est

WGA BY-LAWS I'M THANKFUL FOR
By Jeremy Weiner

The Writers Guild of America East, Inc. is governed by a Constitution and a
comprehensive set of by-laws.  On This Thanksgiving Eve, I'd like to take a
moment to share with you the WGA by-laws I'm most thankful for. 

Article V, Section 1 - Nomination Procedure for Officers and Council Members

c) Not later than eleven (11) weeks after the mailing in (b) above, or eighteen (18) weeks after the mailing in (a) above, a mailing shall go out to all Current members with a ballot that shall include the names of those candidates who received the highest number of votes in either (b) or (a) above. The list of candidates for Council shall be no greater than three (3) times the number of vacant Council seats. The list of candidates for each office shall be no greater than three (3) names for each office.

Article VI,  Section 3 - Council Meetings

A majority of the members (including officers) shall constitute a quorum for the meeting. Acts of a majority of Council members at any duly called meeting of the Council at which a quorum is present shall constitute the act of the Council, except as otherwise specified herein. A majority of the members and officers present at any meeting, whether a quorum shall be present or not, may adjourn the meeting to a fixed date without further notice to those present except the announcement at such meeting of the time and place of holding the adjourned meeting, provided that the time so fixed shall not extend beyond the next regular meeting of the Council. There shall be no voting of proxies at any Council meeting. In the event a full quorum is not present, all business shall be considered validly enacted unless the quorum is challenged.

Fellow writers, have you taken a moment to reflect upon the WGA by-laws you're thankful for? 

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at LateShowWritersOnStrike.com
5:22 pm est

Another Casualty of the WGA Strike
A Late Show voiceover performer shares how the WGA strike has affected him personally.
1:11 pm est

What Animals Would Say About The Writers Strike If They Could Talk
BY STEVE YOUNG
Horse: “Neighhh!  You human writers must fight for your fair share!” 
            --You said it, horse!

Lion: “Roarrr!  Be strong and you’ll win!”
            --Thanks, lion!

Snake: “Ssss!  You deserve to get paid for downloads and digital streaming!”
            --We’re glad you understand, snake!

Lobster: “Lob-lob-lob!  The big media companies should treat you with respect!”
            --Well put, lobster!

Turkey: “Gobble-gobble! Writers should give up and take a bad deal!”
            --Oh yeah?  You’ll get yours tomorrow, turkey!
1:09 pm est

“I THINK NIKKI FINKE IS TRYING TO KILL ME”

Everyone in the entertainment industry is affected by this strike. There are many questions, and very few answers. One thing is known- you have to read DeadlineHollywoodDaily.com several times a day to try and see what is going on. People view Nikki Finke as a saint… everyone but me.

This piece is called, “I THINK NIKKI FINKE IS TRYING TO KILL ME” BY JUSTIN STANGEL

You may think I'm crazy, but hear me out.

Nikki Finke is a great reporter. Great reporters know how to get information- like what time I leave my house in the morning. Like what my route is. Like where I buy my coffee.

This morning when I was leaving my house, I got into my car and pulled down my driveway. Just then a red pick up truck came very close to nearly driving into my lane. Crazy- maybe if it ended there. Unfortunately it doesn't.

Every day I take the same route into the city, like you don't this Nikki Finke. Today several detour signs stood in my way. Several road workers picked today of all days to pave the road. Really? Today, when I'm trying to get into the city. If those signs were not bright orange, and placed a good half mile in front of me, I could have driven into them causing minor damage to my Toyota Highlander. I don't even want to think about what might have happened to my tires if I had driven through that rocky paving… stuff. What is that- gravel? You know, they dump it in front of the truck with the big thing on it.

Two bullets dodged. What's next?

I stopped at Starbucks, ordered a Venti Skim Latte… as I do everyday. Today the milk was bad. Attempted poisoning!

So now you see the facts. Two questions come to mind:

1.     WHY would she try and kill me?
2.     How does the Toyota Highlander drive?

Nikki Finke has broken every major strike story over the last few weeks. That just raises expectations. People are thinking, “What's next Nikki?” “I want more, Nikki,” “Where is the next big story Nikki?” I believe with this pressure on her, she has been forced to a place where instead of reporting the news, she has to create the news. News like “David Letterman's Head Writer MURDERED!”

The Toyota Highlander delivers an agreeable combination of comfort and control. The four-cylinder engine delivers tolerable acceleration. Most buyers will prefer the V6, which offers smooth, strong acceleration in all situations.

As with everyone in Hollywood, I will continue to read DeadlineHollywoodDaily.com. But know this Nikki Finke, I will not go down with out a fight.

11:00 pm est

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

From the picket line...

BY BOB BORDEN

There are only two things that could make me happy right now - hearing
the strike is over and free donuts!

webassets/bobdonut.jpg 

Only one of those things came true today. 

10:56 pm est

WGA STRIKE WORD CHALLENGE

BY LEE ELLENBERG

See how many words you can make from "WGA."

Example: WAG

Check back tomorrow for the solution!

Hint: There are 12 words you can make!

10:51 pm est

AN IMPORTANT MESSAGE FOR LateShowWritersOnStrike.com READERS

 AN IMPORTANT MESSAGE FOR LateShowWritersOnStrike.com READERS
 By Jeremy Weiner
 
It has come to my attention that the domain name LateShowWritersOnStrike.net was recently registered by a well-known purveyor of adult content.  My fellow writers and I would like to assure you that this adult site is in no way affiliated with or endorsed by LateShowWritersoOnStrike.com.   We have obtained legal counsel to aggressively pursue a trademark infringement lawsuit against the cybersquatter, in hopes of fully disassociating ourselves from this inappropriate material.   Once again, the purpose of this site is to provide an outlet for the “Late Show” writers to comment on the current writers strike, not to offer hot webcam chat with naughty amateurs.  We apologize for any confusion.  Thank you.

10:42 pm est

"HIS FACE IS WHITE LIKE A CHEESECAKE"
BY JOE GROSSMAN

Last week, I was interviewed on the picket line by a reporter from Austria, which, according to Wikipedia, is a country in Europe. His article (http://derstandard.at/?url=/?id=3116832) was published on Sunday, and it describes me thusly: "His face is white like a cheesecake."

Many other international journalists have also interviewed me since the strike began. Maybe certain idioms are getting lost in translation, but here are some other peculiar descriptions I've received:

"We spoke with Late Show writer Joe Grossman, who has the dainty shoulders of an adolescent milkmaid." (Denmark)

"Despite hours of marching in circles, his muscles are soft and tender like a slow-cooked ropa vieja." (Cuba)

"Should the strike cost him his job, Mr. Grossman's small, nimble hands would make him ideal for any factory's staff of child laborers." (China)

"The strike is an unfortunate circumstance for all involved, according to Joe Grossman, whose jaws unhinge wide enough to engulf an entire caribou, should it be so unfortunate as to encounter him in the wild." (Greece)

"The distance from the point of shoulder to the hip bone is slightly shorter than from the highest point of the withers to the ground. He is medium-boned, and the length of his legs is in proportion to a well-balanced frame. His muzzle is rather short, straight, fine, free of lippiness and never snipey. When examined, he feels sturdy." (Norway)

"He looks like a young Gene Wilder" (technically not from the foreign media, but a backhanded compliment from the mother of a woman I've been dating)

"He is shifty like a Jew." (Afghanistan)


10:19 pm est

International intrigue

 An Austrian newspaper Der Standard wrote a piece and included the LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com Late Show Writers On Strike. 

Here is the link

http://derstandard.at/?url=/?id=3116832  

Here is the translation of what they wrote about us.

" Bush stupidly, Al Gore a lot of fat "

The US-author's strike has the first results: Popular Late Night shows like those of David Letterman stand before the compulsive break. Meanwhile, ORF also gets the dependence on the American standard market to feel.

One looks at Joe Grossman that he spends his time mostly at the desk. His face is white like a cheesecake. Long days and half a night crouch he on the computer, until they are ready, the witty sayings which David Letterman strews under the television people as if they have spontaneously occurred to him. Now the pale curly hairstyle has exchanged the office fug for fresh air. Joe Grossman strikes.

That is he runs in the circle as it is usual with a strike in America. On a drafty corner of the Battery of park, acoustically accompanies from rattling pneumatic hammers, he turns small rounds. " On of strike ", stands on his transparency. This is not original, it should also not be at all. " In addition the thing is too serious ", says Grossman.

Hardest it meets the ironic niche of the television nation, the Late Night shows where stars rub themselves like Jay Leno, Jon Stewart and Dave Letterman viciously against the political everyday life.

They everything let for a long time sent run once again what is about in such a way as if only announcements of the last month came in the news. " Is sorry us ", regret both Stangel brothers, Eric and Justin, the bosses of Lettermans to 10-headed author's team. With anxious looks they tell about the last strike, that of 1988. It lasted 22 weeks, the shows lost ten percent of her spectators, most which switched off, did not come again."

You get the dollars, we the peanuts

Still, here they want to get through. " Did you know that half of the writers earns not enough to be able to afford a health insurance? ", asks Eric Stangel.

Joe Grossman has Letterman, quite humorously, another ten tips leave with which jokes he could fill the break. With all nice stereotypes: " Bush stupidly, Al Gore a lot of fat, Paris Hilton slovenly. " If in the studios the lights go out, he notes sarcastically, " has also a good side. The lack of fresh programs gives us the chance to indulge, finally, sometimes in our dearest hobby: not to read. "

10:17 pm est

BILL SCHEFT'S STRIKE-RELATED DAVE-TYPE MONOLOGUE JOKE OF THE DAY:

The big issue of the writers strike is the New Media. Everybody is making money off the Internet except the people who create the content. It's criminal. The only thing Paris Hilton got from her last sex video was an STD.

-Bill Scheft 

8:28 am est

NEWS BLOOPER ROUNDUP
BY JOE GROSSMAN

On the Late Show, we regularly feature actual clips from news shows in which public figures unintentionally say something ridiculous, a technical mishap occurs or things go wrong in some other amusing way. And wouldn't you know it, in the two weeks we've been on strike, there have been many such instances that we have not been able to show you. A few examples:


November 11, This Week with George Stephanopoulos
A pesky fly disrupts George Stephanopoulos's interview with Condoleezza Rice

November 4, Fox News Sunday
Chris Wallace sneezes while introducing the "Power Player of the Week" segment.

November 12, Good Morning America
Diane Sawyer giggles uncontrollably throughout the Norman Mailer obituary.

November 18, Meet the Press
During a satellite interview with Senator Chris Dodd, the director clearly has a hard time fitting both Dodd and Tim Russert's giant fat heads into the split-screen.

November 15, Charlie Rose
While interviewing Fred Thompson, Charlie Rose repeatedly calls him "Mommy."

November 18, Face the Nation
For three awkward minutes, Bob Schieffer tells John Edwards how pretty his eyes are.

November 6, The Today Show
Ann Curry does something stupid and/or irritating (I didn't see the show that day, but it seems like a safe bet).

November 13, Larry King Live
Instead of asking his guest a question, a disoriented Larry King recites the complete lyrics to the 1978 C.W. McCall classic "Convoy."

November 18, Late Edition
Wolf Blitzer does the entire show with a beard full of dried barbecue sauce.
8:26 am est

Monday, November 19, 2007

What the hell??

Someone is translating LateShowWritersOnStrike.com into Chinese.

tc2tc.mojolingo.xuite.net/ m2m-0000/lateshowwritersonstrike.com/ 

If we find out someone is making money off our site, you'll be hearing from an attorney (or an actor we cast to pretend to be a attorney.)  

Here is the way to write "Richard Belzer" in Chinese

理查 Belzer

 

-Eric Stangel (also known as 在艾力克 Stangel)

9:37 pm est

EXCLUSIVE: Upcoming Picketing Information

Right now we can share with you inside information we have received from sources at the Writers Guild of America. We have been asked to keep the name of the source anonymous. If he or she was associated with this information he or she could lose his or her job.

As you know the writers strike picket lines first featured a giant inflatable rat

 webassets/rat.jpg

By the end of the week, a large pig watched over the march.

webassets/pig.jpg 

We have it on good authority that this will be unveiled Thursday.

webassets/tdaypicket.jpg

BY ERIC STANGEL, JUSTIN STANGEL, AND OUR MOM LOIS STANGEL

GRAPHIC BY BOB BORDEN

(IT TOOK 4 PEOPLE TO WORK ON THIS JOKE) 

9:02 pm est

A Writer’s Strike Money-Saving Tip

BY MATT ROBERTS

Hoping for a speedy outcome to the strike, but planning for the worst, many of us are cutting back on our spending.  With a little ingenuity, though, even on a tight budget, life can be very rich.

For example, rather than spend $19 on a 750ml bottle of Starbucks Coffee Liqueur, here’s a recipe for a tasty alternative that costs a fraction as much.
 
 1.       Brew a pot of Chock Full of Nuts ‘French Roast’ coffee – doubling the number of suggested scoops.
 2.       Stir in 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon and 1 tablespoon sugar until dissolved.
 3.       Combine sweetened coffee mixture with 2 cups of any kerosene or paraffin-based lamp oil.
 4.       Allow to cool.  Serve over ice.

LateShowWritersOnStrike.com reminds you to enjoy tastefully and drink responsibly.

8:38 pm est

HERE'S WHAT'S HAPPENING ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE PICKET LINE
BY TOM RUPRECHT

The media has made much of all the big stars (Eva Longoria, Robin
Williams, Ray Romano) who've come out to support the writers on the
picket line. The studios are understandably upset that the media
hasn't reported all the celebrities who've come out in support of
them. So in the interest of equal time, here's who's on their side--

--Last week Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad brought doughnuts to
the board of GE.

--On Monday Venezuela's dictator Hugo Chavez was photographed giving a
"thumbs up" with the executive directors at Disney.

--Pakistan strongman Pervez Musharrah met recently with the board of
Universal and urged them to "stay strong." The General also generously
offered to donate three tanks to the producers should they need help
keeping the writers in line.

--Richard Belzer was spotted passing out chicken parmigiana sandwiches
to executives at Viacom. Now this was strange, because Belzer recently
brought chicken parmigiana sandwiches to the writers. When confronted,
Belzer admitted, "I really hate chicken parm. I don't know why my wife
keeps making it."
6:29 pm est

Mail Call!!

LateShowWritersOnStrike.com received an email this morning from an overseas reader named John Max which deserved a response.

Here's Mr. Max's email...

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
To: Writers@LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com

From: Mr. John Max

THIS IS FOR YOUR ATTENTION.  We wish to notify you again that you were listed as a beneficiary to  the total sum of £10,600,000.00 GBP (Ten Million Six Hundred Thousand British Pounds) in the codicil and last testament of the deceased.  (Name now withheld since this is our second letter to you).

We contacted you because you bear the surname identity and therefore can present you as the beneficiary to the inheritance.  We therefore reckoned that you could receive these funds as you are qualified by your name identity. All the legal papers will be processed in your acceptance. In your acceptance of this deal, we request that you kindly forward to us your letter of acceptance; your  current telephone and fax numbers and a forwarding address to enable us to file necessary documents at our high court probate division for  the release of this sum of money.  Please contact me via my private email so that we can get this done immediately.
Kind regards, 
Mr. JOHN MAX. 
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Well Mr. Max let me tell you something. The Late Show writers are not interested in your 10.6 million pounds. We are here because we want 2.5% of the re-use of our material on new media such as internet, cell phones and iPods. Currently we are paid nothing for such re-use and it's time rules are put in place for the future.

This is a marathon, not a sprint, Mr. Max. We officially turn down your offer.

We, as writers were specifically told by the WGA not to negotiate privately with anyone. There is an official negotiating committee for that kind of thing. Please contact the guild with all of your future offers when you are willing to discuss the real issues.

(Also, you say this is the second time you have notified us. We did not get the first email. Therefore we apologize if you thought we were ignoring you.)

-Eric Stangel

12:01 pm est

BREAKING NEWS- HEBREW SHOUT-OUT TRANSLATED

Yesterday we reported a website mentioned the LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com blog. Here is what they wrote

שביתת התסריטאים, היום השמיני והתשיעי

עוד כותבי טלוויזיה שובתים משיקים בלוג בהיעדר מקום אחר לכתוב בו (ומכיוון שממילא הם לא מקבלים כסף על האינטרנט): הפעם אלה התסריטאים של דיוויד לטרמן.

http://cinemascope.co.il/?p=816

High-ranking Mossad sources have provided the following translation of the mysterious Hebrew language shout-out:

"My Sled!"

"The strike of the screenwriters, the eighth and the ninth days"

"More striking television writers are writing a blog, because there's no other place for them to write.  Because anyway they do not get money for writing for the internet.  This time it's the writers of David Letterman."

(NOTE: the mysterious "My Sled!" appears to be a reference to a discussion elsewhere in the blog about how classic movie lines like "Rosebud" would be lame if not for the artistry of great screenwriters.)

We will post additional information as it becomes available
-STEVE YOUNG

10:49 am est

ALAN ZWEIBEL: THURBER AWARD WINNER
BY LEE ELLENBERG
Over the course of our picketing, I was fortunate enough to strike up a friendship with the wonderfully talented Alan Zweibel.  Talking to Alan is a treat.  It’s fascinating to hear about his experiences working on Saturday Night Live, The Garry Shandling Show, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Billy Crystal’s Broadway show, 700 Sundays.  Last year, Alan won the James Thurber Prize for American Humor for his novel, The Other Shulman.  What I find most amusing is Alan will never miss an opportunity to shoehorn this fact into any conversation.  To illustrate this point, I’ve enclosed a recent email I received from Alan:

Dear Lee,
Wonderful seeing you on the picket line yesterday.  Though not nearly as wonderful as when I won the Thurber Award for my novel The Other Shulman.  The story you told about your weekend was quite amusing.  Perhaps you can turn that anecdote into a book and then win the Thurber Award, as I did for my novel The Other Shulman.  I must say you are looking quite well.  Your skin looked glowing and radiant, not unlike the dazzling sheen of my gold-plated Thurber Award, which I won for my novel The Other Shulman.  Incidentally, small world story—I was thinking about how you’re from Brooklyn.  Well, it just dawned on me that Brooklyn is only 477 miles away from Columbus, Ohio, the birthplace of James Thurber, who is the namesake of the award I won for my novel, The Other Shulman.  I mean, isn’t that just nuts?  Anyway, gotta run.  Asked my wife to dress up as the Thurber Award last night and there’s gold paint all over the bed linens.

Looking forward to seeing you on the picket lines tomorrow with all the other non-Thurber winners…unlike me, who won the Thurber Award for my novel, The Other Shulman.

See ya!
Alan
(Winner of the 2006 Thurber Award )

P.S. I won the Thurber Award.

P.S.S. Thurber Award.

(Kidding aside, Alan’s book is truly brilliant.  And I am proud to add that the year Alan won the Thurber Award,
Late Show’s very own Bill Scheft was a finalist for his phenomenal novel, Time Won’t Let Me.  This is why the strike is so sad.  These guys should be writing.) 

webassets/zweibel2.jpg
10:44 am est

The Art of Negotiation

The Art of Negotiation

by Jeremy J. Weiner and Donald J. Trump

webassets/TRUMP.jpg
By now you’ve heard the news that the WGA and the AMPTP have mutually agreed to resume formal negotiations on Monday, November 26th.  We would like to take a moment to remind the WGA leadership of a very important point: negotiating is an art.  There are nuances and finely honed techniques and rules to be aware of.  Here are a few of them:

Know what you’re doing. Sounds simple, but we’ve seen a lot of instances where we couldn’t believe how much the other side didn’t know. And these are producers you’re dealing with.  There is a distinct possibility they don’t know anything.

Keep the opposition off balance. What they don’t know won’t hurt you, and that may help you down the line.   Knowledge is power, so keep as much of it to yourself as possible.  Also, consider wearing a musky cologne to distract them.

Trust your instincts. There are a lot of situations that will not be black and white in negotiating, so go with your gut…unless your gut tells you to accept a crappy deal.  Don’t do that.

Don’t be confined by expectations.  Remain flexible and open to new ideas.  For example, bring a large tub of cole slaw to the negotiations - it’s a great way to break the ice!

Don’t be an ordinary negotiator when you can be an extraordinary one. Devote time to this art and it can bring you enormous rewards.  Now go get ‘em!

10:17 am est

BILL SCHEFT'S STRIKE-RELATED DAVE-TYPE MONOLOGUE JOKE OF THE DAY

Everybody's behind the writers. Earlier today in a show of support that thing on Donald Trump's head walked off the job.
-Bill Scheft

10:15 am est

Solo Picketing
BY STEVE YOUNG
By Sunday, it had been several days since I’d picketed.  There’s no picketing on weekends, nothing was scheduled for Friday, and I missed Thursday due to personal reasons (my solid gold Rolls-Royce needed new engine diamonds).  So I decided to try some solo picketing.
Without access to the Guild’s four foot cardboard tubes and large placards, I improvised my own sign with a ruler and a couple sheets of copy paper.  I wrote “On Strike,” but it wasn’t centered properly since my ruler was now unavailable.  This was already harder than I’d anticipated.
10:00 a.m.: Marched around my apartment building’s laundry room chanting “Hey, hey, ho, ho, corporate greed has got to go.”  The surly woman from the 4th floor showed up to do a load of towels.  She asked me what the hell I was doing.  I ignored her and continued chanting until the super told me to leave.  The super and the towel woman are stooges of the AMPTP.
10:38 a.m.: Chanted “What do we want?  A contract!  When do we want it?  Now!” in front of the corner deli.  The guy in charge of the flowers turned the hose on me.  Couldn’t put my wet clothes in the dryer because I’d been banned from the laundry room.
11:02 a.m.: Waved my damp, drooping sign at passing cars on Lexington Avenue.  Eventually a truck driver honked, probably at the delivery guy on the bike, but I like to believe he also supports the Guild.
11:29 a.m.: Tried the WGAE plastic whistle.  Several cabs stopped.  The drivers were annoyed that I wasn’t hailing them, and refused to listen to a lecture about new media residuals.
11:50 a.m.: Retreated to the safe confines of my apartment.  Picketed in front of the full-length mirror in my bedroom to make it seem like there were two picketers in bathrobes.  Whispered chants to myself.
2:00 p.m.: My shift ended.
The lesson I learned?  One writer, however passionate, can’t turn the tide alone.  Working together is the key.  After all, there is no “I” in “union”!  
10:02 am est

We're Gonna Equivocate Like It's 1999
BY BILL SCHEFT

In the Sunday New York Times Magazine, former Disney chief Michael Eisner says the writers were foolish to strike over the use of content on the Internet, which he described as "neither profitable nor is it clear in exactly what direction it's going to go."
And then he suddenly cut the interview short because he had to pick up some Pokemon cards and a SEGA Dreamcast for his daughter on their way to the Ricky Martin concert.
9:59 am est

Sunday, November 18, 2007

It Turns Out Some People are NOT What They Seem
BY TOM RUPRECHT

Ron Howard was on the picket line on Thursday. When I approached him for
a picture, he took my camera (a gift from my late grandfather) and
smashed it to the ground. Displaying some ninja wizardry he surely
learned on the set of "Gung Ho," Ron Howard then spun in the air and
gave me a devastating kick to the stomach. As I fell to the pavement,
the insulin I use to regulate my diabetes rolled out of my pocket.

Seeing the syringe, Howard's eyes lit up the way they used to light up
for Jenny Piccolo. He stomped on the syringe and gave a menacing laugh
as one of the shards of glass flew into my eye.

Some might see this encounter as an example of the disappointment that
can follow when you meet your idols. But honestly, I was always more
of a Potsie guy growing up, so this wasn't that big a deal.

webassets/ronhoward2.jpg
9:50 pm est

Rupert Jee Comments on the WGA Strike
9:09 pm est

Thanks for the mentions...
We here at LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com would like to take a moment to the people at the hundreds of websites who have posted about us all across the Internet, and even to those few people who have access to the Extranet.

Anyway, we'd like to give a special shout out to the folks at a site called Cinemascope who posted this about us.

שביתת התסריטאים, היום השמיני והתשיעי

עוד כותבי טלוויזיה שובתים משיקים בלוג בהיעדר מקום אחר לכתוב בו (ומכיוון שממילא הם לא מקבלים כסף על האינטרנט): הפעם אלה התסריטאים של דיוויד לטרמן.

http://cinemascope.co.il/?p=816

I have no idea what it says. All I know is, those hyperlinks take you to our site. And the exclamation point in the title makes me think it's something good. If anyone can tell us, shoot us an email at Writers@LateShowWritersOnStrike.com

-Eric Stangel

8:13 pm est

A message to my fellow picketers:

A message to my fellow picketers:

As you know, by midnight last night, no agreement had been made as to where the WGA would picket Monday.  Therefore, we will not be picketing.

It’s a failure of all parties involved that it has come to this.  We love picketing, and we love those with whom we picket.  Let’s all try to get this thing resolved as quickly as possible so we can get back to work out there, doing what we do best: chanting, blowing whistles, and eating.

In the meantime, it will not be looked upon kindly if any of you picket independently.

Signs down MEANS signs down.

Yours in solidarity,

Matt Roberts

7:47 pm est

QUESTIONS THE LATE SHOW WRITERS GET ASKED REPEATEDLY ON THE PICKET LINES
BY LEE ELLENBERG

People walking by us on the picket lines tend to ask the Late Show writers the same questions.  As much as we appreciate their curiosity, it can get a little tedious spouting off the same answers, day in and day out.  To put an end to this, I am going to, once and for all, answer all those questions that we're asked repeatedly.  Here she goes:
2.5%
4 cents
$1 billion
Uh…once, when I was in San Carlos, but I’m not sure why that’s pertinent.
Well, I was pretty drunk at the time.
No, not pretty in the traditional sense.
Kind of like Lou Dobbs in rouge and a sarape.
12 pesos and a taquito.
Tequila and ointment.
No, I’m not interested in buying a black market monkey.
Yes, that IS an unfortunate place to have a boil.
Well, yes, it does look inflamed.
Yes, Oliver Platt is quite handsome in person.
No, I will not call Jerry Stiller over here so you can offer to buy his pants.
No, I don't lick my picket sign when no one's looking.
I don't know.  I just have no desire to.
Look, I really have to go.
Fine...one last question.
NO, THAT'S DISGUSTING!!!!

And that's that.
7:44 pm est

"GEORGE W. BUSH JOKE-OF-THE-DAY"

BY TOM RUPRECHT

Because of the writers' strike, many of you are hungry for some
political humor. I thought I'd help fill the void by giving you a
excerpt from my book "George W. Bush: An Unauthorized Oral
History." Here's today's joke:

A few days after he took office, I came to Washington to brief the
President about a possible smallpox pandemic. I gave him the various
contingency plans the CDC had prepared in the event a strain of
smallpox fell into the hands of terrorists. President Bush didn't seem
to be paying much attention to me, however. He was more concerned with
the kung fu magazine he was reading. When I finished, the only
question Bush asked was, "Hey, are albinos contagious?"--Craig Finn,
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Tom's book "George W. Bush: An Unauthorized Oral History" is available on http://www.amazon.com/ and other quality bookstores

webassets/bushbook.jpg

7:40 pm est

Saturday, November 17, 2007

EXCLUSIVE: THE MYSTERY MEN BEHIND THE BACKCHANNEL TALKS

BY ROB BURNETT AND ERIC STANGEL

The WGA and AMPTP have agreed to go back to the bargaining table on November 26th. It had been reported for days in such places as Nikki Finke’s DeadlineHollywoodDaily.com that backchannel discussions had been taking place between the Writers Guild and Studio Executives brokered by a small group of mystery men.

Those mystery men can now be revealed. It was us.

The members of LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com (Eric Stangel, Justin Stangel, Bill Scheft, Steve Young, Matt Roberts, Tom Ruprecht, Jeremy Weiner, Lee Ellenberg, Joe Grossman and Bob Borden)  have been working for some time to get the two sides to meet, and we’re proud to say they have agreed.

How did we do it? It was just this easy.

The postcard pictured below was mailed to high-ranking members of the AMPTP and WGA including Writers Guild president Patric Verrone and chief WGA negotiator Dave Young, Walt Disney CEO Bob Iger and News Corp (Fox) No. 2 Peter Chernin.

webassets/REVISED.jpg

It was the perfect plan.

The ten of us dashed to LaGuardia Airport, ran to the counter and said, “Give us ten tickets on your next flight to Los Angeles. We’re going to get the AMPTP and WGA to meet again after all.”

Once they heard that, no tickets were needed. The kind lady had us escorted in those crazy electric carts used to transport fat people through security, down the jetway to the plane door. (Note: A few of us had hair gel which was confiscated. Good catch security!)

4 hours and 48 minutes later more crazy electric carts used to transport fat people waited for us at Los Angeles International Airport and took us to Santa Monica. (In retrospect a taxi would have been a better idea)

It was 7:45pm. We went to the Mickey Rooney ballroom and did 15 minutes of the most important waiting of our lives.

Then it happened.

One by one they showed up. Verrone, Young, Iger, and Chernin all looking for their major prize. But the only thing they got was a stare down from ten unhappy, pasty, fairly bloated writers.

“You win,” said Iger. “We’ll go back to the table.”

“We’ll do it right here, and right now,” answered Verrone.

“No,” we said. “A week from Monday is better. It’ll give everyone a chance to get a jump on their holiday shopping. Now who’s driving us back to LAX?”


7:52 pm est

Jerry Stiller- GREAT GUY

BY JUSTIN STANGEL 

While I was picketing in the rain Thursday afternoon, I looked up and saw Jerry Stiller. I am a big fan of Mr. Stiller. He joined our circle in front of Viacom. I watched him as he marched, and chanted, and all I thought was, “I have to talk to him.” Unfortunately I never found the time. Before I knew it, the picketing was over and he was gone.

webassets/STILLERPIC.jpg 

 Here is a transcript of how I believe our conversation WOULD have gone.

JUSTIN
Hello, Mr. Stiller?

JERRY STILLER
Please call me Jerry.

JUSTIN
Thank you Jerry. I am the head writer of Late Show with David Letterman.

JERRY STILLER
I am a huge fan of that show.

JUSTIN
Thank you.

JERRY STILLER
Really! I think you do a great job!

JUSTIN
Thank you Jerry Stiller.

JERRY STILLER
I’m not kidding. I think you are the best!

JUSTIN
Please, Jerry Stiller… stop.

JERRY STILLER
Don’t take this the wrong way, but you are a very handsome man.

JUSTIN
Please, Jerry Stiller, you are making me blush.

JERRY STILLER
I also read LateShowWritersOnStrike.com.

JUSTIN
Really Jerry Stiller?

JERRY STILLER
Yes. How do you guys think of such funny stuff… day after day…. It’s amazing.

JUSTIN
We try very hard... Look, Mr. Stiller.

JERRY STILLER
I SAID CALL ME JERRY!

JUSTIN
Ok, easy. Jerry I’ve always wanted to ask you a question.

JERRY STILLER
Shoot kid-o.

JUSTIN
Can I give you a hug?

JERRY AND I EMBRACE. THE HUNDREDS OF WGAE MEMBERS PICKETING AND MARCHING AROUND US IN A CIRCLE, STOP AND APPLAUD.

IT WAS TO BE THE BEST SINGLE MOMENT IN MY LIFE, SURPASSING THE BIRTH OF MY TWO KIDS, MY WEDDING AND THE TIME I MET WILLIAM SHATNER.

7:47 pm est

How the WGA Strike is Affecting Rupert Jee
10:40 am est

Perks of the WGA Picket Line
10:39 am est

The Big Media Companies vs. The Other WGA

BY STEVE YOUNG

If you try to check online for information about the Writers Guild of America strike, be careful.  Typing in wga.com rather than wga.org will bring you to the other WGA: the Western Growers Association, an organization representing growers of fresh produce in California and Arizona.
 
A confused and desperate AMPTP has published the following open letter to the WGA in several agricultural trade magazines.
 
To The Leadership And Members Of The WGA:
 
We’d like to clarify our position on DVD’s and new media as they relate to your organization.
 
We maintain that while fruits, vegetables, and nuts may someday be distributed by digital streaming or downloads, such technology is extremely speculative.  Likewise, the current market for lettuce, almonds, plums, etc on DVD is practically non-existent.
 
We thank you for not demanding even 1/100th of 1% of any fresh produce-related revenue we may eventually generate through DVD’s or new media.  In fact, our records show that you’ve never contacted us in any way.  However, we must warn you: never, ever to try to get any money from us on this, even though you grew the delicious fruits, vegetables, and nuts.
 
Many of our executives routinely send fruit baskets to friends and clients.  It would be a shame if the contents of those baskets had to be sourced from New Mexico, Oregon, or who knows where else.  It doesn’t have to happen—as long as you keep your roughened, dirty hands out of our pockets.
 
Sincerely,
The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers

9:20 am est

LateShowWritersOnStrike.Com Football Picks of The Week
By Eric Stangel

Some interesting matchups this weekend in the nfl

Kansas City Chiefs at Indianapolis Colts

Indianapolis is a 14 point favorite at home versus the Chiefs. The Colts are banged up, but still almost managed to beat the Chargers last Sunday in San Diego. They will breeze to a victory at home this week against an inconsistent Kansas City team. If I was not on strike and currently had an income, I would take the Colts and give the points.


Washington Redskins at Dallas Cowboys

Dallas has had a solid season, but the Redskins will hang around and keep it close. If the studios hadn’t screwed the WGA on internet residuals I would have taken the Redskins and the 11 points.


Miami Dolphins at Philadelphia Eagles

I would bet all 4 cents I currently would receive on a dvd sold of my work on the Eagles minus the 10 points.


11:21 pm est

Friday, November 16, 2007

AN OPEN LETTER TO ALL WGA MEMBERS
Fellow Striking Writers:
 
Yesterday, Barry Bonds was indicted for lying to investigators about using steroids.  I don’t ever want to see that happen to one of us.

As this strike moves into its third week and picketing begins to take its toll on our bodies, I implore you all not to succumb to temptation and take steroids to improve your performance on the line.

Sure HGH might allow you to hold your picket sign higher and straighter than the average writer.  Sure “The Cream” and “The Clear” might allow you to march faster and longer than the average writer.  But, it would all be a lie.

And, don’t try to tell me your strike captain told you what you were taking was flaxseed oil.   That’s no excuse.

We’re asking the producers to play fair with us at the negotiating table.  In order for that to happen, we first need to play fair amongst ourselves.

Don’t damage the integrity of the strike by taking performance-enhancing drugs.           

Sincerely,

Jeremy Weiner

8:56 pm est

AMPTP is now picketing

by Bob Borden 

It seems like the AMPTP propaganda machine is in full effect right now.  It's getting so bad, THEY were seen picketing today.  Here's what an AMPTP picket sign looks like:

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They have solid gold picket signs!  Now THAT'S crazy!


8:36 pm est

CLASSIC MOVIE SCENES IF THERE HAD BEEN NO WRITERS

It's time for another installment of...

CLASSIC MOVIE SCENES IF THERE HAD BEEN NO WRITERS by Lee Ellenberg

                           Ingmar Bergman's "Wild Strawberries"

EXT. WILD STRAWBERRY PATCH

It is a warm, sunny day with soft summer skies and a mild breeze coming through the birches.

Isak sits under a tree.

Isak's aunt walks by with Sara.  They are both holding baskets.

Sara turns around, puts down her baskets and runs toward him.
                           

                                    SARA


SUBTITLE:

                                    ISAK


SUBTITLE:

                                    SARA


SUBTITLE:
 

                                    ISAK


SUBTITLE:

Isak smiles.

Fin.

7:40 pm est

HERE'S SOMETHING I LEARNED
BY TOM RUPRECHT

The guy through whom I place my NFL bets doesn't consider "Work
Stoppage" an adequate excuse to get out of paying one's gambling
losses. On a similar note, in a misguided show of solidarity for their
WGA brothers, the Minnesota Vikings offense decided to go on strike
last Sunday against the Packers. 34-0. Thanks, bastards.
8:20 am est

An Insider's Look At Negotiations....
(In order to get a better handle on the complexities of the negotiating process, Late Show Strike Captain Bill Scheft conducted a recent phone interview with sports uberagent Scott Boras.)
 
BS: Thank you for taking the time to talk with us….
 
SB: Let’s move this along. I’ve got an eyebrow threading at noon with Victor Conte.
 
BS: The guy from BALCO?
 
SB: What are you, a cop?
 
BS: Okay, the writers maintain the position that all they want is $11 million a year in new media profits from each of the major production companies. This represents a fraction –
 
SB: What are you, friggin’ soft? Never ever ever EVER mention a specific dollar figure in the middle of a negotiation. Unless you’re me. Now, I have a firm offer of $350 million out there for your boys.
 
BS: Really?
 
SB: Hold on, I’ve got Chris Meyers on the blower. He’s going to break into the World Series with the announcement. Only cost me a c-note.
 
BS: But the World Series has been over for almost three weeks.
 
SB: No problem. I’ve got the Beezer Brothers ready to build condos. And we can sell off the hangars and planes to the Mexicans –
 
BS: Isn’t that a line from “Wall Street?”
 
SB: Look, Chico. First, you get the money. Then, you get the power. Then, you get the woman.
 
BS: There is no firm offer, is there?
 
SB: You wanna know what second prize is? Set of steak knives.
 
BS: Thank you, Mr. Boras.
 
SB: You know I played minor league ball….
 
(dial tone)
8:19 am est

"GEORGE W. BUSH JOKE-OF-THE-DAY"
BY TOM RUPRECHT

Because of the writers' strike, many of you are hungry for some
political humor. I thought I'd help fill the void by giving you a
excerpt from my book "George W. Bush: An Unauthorized Oral
History." Here's today's joke:

I'll never forget coming out of the delivery room and informing George
he had twins. He got a very worried look on his face and asked, "Are
they the stuck-together kind?"--
Craig Thomas, OBGYN

Tom's book "George W. Bush: An Unauthorized Oral History" is available on http://www.amazon.com/ and other quality bookstores
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8:16 am est

Mail call!!

Some very interesting emails have come in which should be addressed.

TO:
WRITERS@LATESHOWWRITERSONSTRIKE.COM

I support you one hundred percent!  

None of us in the business would be anywhere without you guys.

Thank you for this blog too and for keeping us informed.

Wayne Martin

Wayne Martin Puppetsest. 1966

Boston, MA

www.WayneMartinPuppets.com
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Thanks for the kind words Wayne. And let me tell our readers- If you're looking for the best in puppets, use Wayne Martin puppets- for all your puppet needs.
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TO: WRITERS@LATESHOWWRITERSONSTRIKE.COM
I have something very important to tell you.

The recipe for Kathy Mavrikakis' WGA strike cookies is identical to
the recipe for the Original Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies.
I know this because I was an unhealthy kid who memorized said recipe and baked these cookies maybe once a week.  Go WGA!
Siri Pinter
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Siri- This is startling information to us. It's going to make me have to re-think every homemade dish Kathy has made for the staff over the years, including the delicious Chicken recipe passed down from her grandmother where she "Shakes" the chicken in a bag of spices and then "Bakes" it. You haven't lived until you've tried it.
She also devised a method where she makes homemade popcorn by cooking it in a special skillet she forms and it pops in a Jiffy!
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TO: WRITERS@LATESHOWWRITERSONSTRIKE.COM
I just wanted to say that I had one of those Richard Belzer sandwiches and mine was definitely meatball, not chick parm.
ANNE D. BERNSTEIN
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Jeremy Weiner was responsible for the original piece about Richard Belzer serving him a hot chicken parmigiana sandwich, and he has something he'd like to say- Jeremy?

 

CLARIFICATION

In my recent LateShowWritersOnStrike.com entry, entitled “Strike Bites,” I stated that Richard Belzer handed out "hot, fresh chicken parmigiana sandwiches" on the WGA picket line last week. It has now come to my attention that this is only partially true.  While Richard DID hand out sandwiches on the picket line last week and I was, without question, the recipient of a chicken parmigiana sandwich [I suppose it could have been another type of poultry like Cornish game hen, but who makes Cornish game hen parmigiana?],  he did not hand out ONLY chicken parmigiana sandwiches.

To Anne and those of you who received something other than a chicken parmigiana sandwich from Richard - whether it was meatball, sausage, eggplant, or some other variety of parmigiana deliciousness – I apologize for the error. 
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Keep those emails coming everyone!
-Eric Stangel

 

11:24 pm est

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Day 11: We're soaked

The picket line at Viacom brought with it falling temperatures and rain. But that didn't stop the writers from coming out.

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Why does that guy in the orange jacket have a sign reading "Grandmas For Writers"?

Organizers handed out clear plastic slickers to protect us from the elements, which leads us to a new game, "Who Looks Least Awkward In The Clear Plastic Slicker?"

Tonight's Contestants are

A) Justin Stangel                       B) Tom Ruprecht                   C) Eric Stangel
            
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We will announce the winner in a future blog entry.

The Late Show staff once again came out to support us. Thanks to Lorraine Galler and Sheryl Zelikson who brought hot chocolate and Jill Goodwin, Daniel Fetter and George the intern (no idea what his last name is- we didn't bother to learn) who bought gumballs. You're the best.
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Lorraine Galler and Sheryl Zelikson
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              Jill Goodwin, Daniel Fetter and George Something    

Odd observation-
For some reason, the inflatable pig reeked of gasoline today. If it exploded, how much would that have hurt our cause?
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Here Rob Burnett takes his life into his own hands. Thank goodness nothin' 'sploded.

More later.
-Eric Stangel

7:40 pm est

Inflatables
BY MATT ROBERTS

Each day on the picket line, we’ve been carrying our signs around a large, inflated, animal figure, meant to attract attention, improve morale, and ward off evil spirits (according to Feng Shui advocates.)

During Week One of the strike, our inflatable, nylon neighbor was an angry rat, complete with blood-soaked claws and menacing fangs.  The implication, as I interpreted it, was that the AMPTP, in their disingenuous negotiation efforts, have been rat-like – in other words, ruthless, parasitic, and prone to disease and inbreeding.

During Week Two, we’ve marched in the shadow of a giant, inflatable, top-hat-wearing pig, sporting dollar signs in his eyes.   He chomps a cigar, exuding selfishness and greed.  The implication here, as I interpret it, is that the AMPTP, in their disingenuous negotiation efforts, have been selfish, greedy, and decadently foppish to the point of wearing top hats.

Why has the Writer’s Guild chosen a rat and a pig to represent the other side, you ask?  Actually, we’re just following rules.

In 1935, Congress founded the U.S. Labor Relations Board, which created a list of appropriate inflatable animals for disgruntled parties to display during each week of a strike action.

Next, although it’s unclear why, each inflatable animal was named according to an alphabetical list provided by the U.S. National Hurricane Center.

Then, in 1957, the American Greetings company assigned ‘Modern’ alternatives to the traditional inflatable animals.

Below, you’ll find the complete list for the first 6 weeks (although we hope it doesn’t last that long.)

Be sure to support the WGA by decorating your office, carving festive gourd ‘strike animals’ with your kids, and otherwise bringing the protest home!

Labor Protest / Strike Action Inflatable Animals  (Courtesy of the U.S. Labor Relations Board) 

                        Traditional                   Modern                              Name

Week 1             Bloodthirsty Rat         Drunken Weasel                    Alan

Week 2             Greedy Pig                  Lascivious Warthog              Bernard

Week 3             Heartless Snake         Self-Centered Newt            Cynthia                      

Week 4             Cutthroat Shark          Goldfish Suffering from Ick    Doris

Week 5             Soulless Wolf              Tick-Ravaged Coyote           Ernie

Week 6             Saber Toothed Tiger   Lethargic Beaver                   Francine

6:32 pm est

Overheard on the picket line...

BY BOB BORDEN

It has come to my attention while on the picket line; people don’t have a whole lot to say to each other.  For the most part, various people walking behind me seem to be upset because their “amazing” show ideas were rejected.  But every now and then, if you keep your ears open, you hear a gem like this:

Picketer #1:  You know what expression I heard for the very first time a few weeks ago?

Picketer #2:  No, what?

Picketer #1:  T.M.I. (Too much information), it really comes in handy.  My boss started talking about his hernia operation, I said, “T.M.I.” and walked out of the room.

Picketer #2:  Yeah, T.M.I. is a good one.

5:48 pm est

Rain At Viacom....
Rainy day picketing today, but the WGA East was still out in force. A full report coming up....
(In the business we call that a tease... Or we used to, when we were working)
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3:22 pm est

THIS WAS ODD
BY TOM RUPRECHT

When you arrive at the picket line, you have to check in with a WGA
official holding a clipboard. Yesterday, the interaction was a little
strange.

WGA PERSON: What's your name?
ME: Tom Ruprecht
WGA PERSON: (long pause) Soo, do you go by "Brian"?

It's 24 hours later, and I still have no idea what the hell she was
talking about. I mean, "Brian" isn't even short for anything. I'm
starting to see why these negotiations are going so slowly.
3:11 pm est

SOUNDTRACK TO THE STRIKE
BY JEREMY WEINER

If you're currently on strike, considering going on strike or just a fan of strikes in general, here's a must-have playlist for your iPod.    

1.       "Underdog World Strike" - Gogol Bordello

2.       "In the Midnight Hour" - Wilson Pickett

3.       "Lady Willpower" - Gary Puckett and the Union Gap

4.       "She Works Hard for the Money" - Donna Summer

5.       "Work It Out" - Beyoncé

6.        "I Walk the Line" - Johnny Cash   [Too obvious? Try Leonard Nimoy's terrific Spoken Word version of "I Walk the Line" from the 1997 album" Spaced Out"]

7.       "Hold On" - Wilson Phillips

8.       "Copacabana" - Barry Manilow   [Workers at The Copa went on strike for 11 weeks in 1968]

9.       Theme from "Let's Make a Deal"

10.   "Who Let the Dogs Out" - Baha Men  [not specifically strike-related, just a great song for any occasion]

Visit the iTunes Store to download these wonderful songs today!  While you're there, be sure to click on "TV Shows" to see the huge selection of downloadable programs for which the producers refuse to properly compensate writers.   
2:57 pm est

Our Brothers and Sisters Walk With Us
The Writers Guild of America is not alone on the picket lines during this difficult time.  The writers are thrilled that the following labor organizations have joined us in an inspiring show of solidarity:

Screen Actors Guild

American Federation of Radio & Television Artists

International Union of Teamsters

Brotherhood of Soup and Chowder Workers

United Pedestrians of America

Union of Movers & Shakers

The American Federation of Library Shushers

The Gum and Chewy Candy Makers Guild

International Union of Celebrity Look-Alikes

Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

Amalgamated Union of Dairy Workers and Tattoo Artists

International Association of Renaissance Faire Workers

American Union of Organized Crime Associates

United Brotherhood of Bent Nail & Tack Straighteners

American Guild Of Dilettantes

National Federation of Gossips and Busybodies

Association of Nude Letter Carriers

Union of Industrial Employees Named Phil

Muggers' Equity

American Association of Bitchy Male Flight Attendants

North American Union of Corrupt Basketball Referees

Chinese Alliance of Lead-Paint Technicians

Tainted-Meat Vendors Guild of New York

Sweaty Fat Guys Who Walk Around Shirtless United

Global Sisterhood of Former Rudy Giuliani Wives
-BY STEVE YOUNG AND JOE GROSSMAN
9:26 am est

THINGS I REGRET PURCHASING RIGHT BEFORE THE WRITERS STRIKE

BY JOE GROSSMAN

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The moral: Always keep your receipts. (Also: You can get fabulous deals on wine goblets if you look hard enough.)

9:17 am est

BILL SCHEFT'S STRIKE-RELATED DAVE-TYPE MONOLOGUE JOKE OF THE DAY
A strike is also known as a work stoppage or a job action. Wait a minute. A job action. Isn't that what got President Clinton impeached?
-BILL SCHEFT
9:12 am est

A day on the picket line
BY BOB BORDEN

Never in a million years did I think I’d be on a picket line.  If you’re curious, here’s a time line from yesterday...

10:00 am:  Arrive at the picketing site; make an effective picket sign highlighting our cause.

10:30 am:  March and chant with my fellow brothers and sisters.

11:00 am:  Late Show Executive Producer Barbara Gaines brought croissants; Mmmmm, tasty.

11:45 am:  WGA officials passed out BBQ sandwiches.  You’d be surprised how croissants don’t
really fill you up.

12:15 pm:  Back to the line.  “Hey hey, ho ho, corporate greed has got to go!”

12:16 pm:  Late Show Staffer Kathy Mavrikakis brought chocolate chip cookies!  My favorite.  A lot of staff members came over as well.  Always nice to catch up.

1:16 pm:  More cookies!  Thanks Valerie Schaer!

1:30 pm:  More sandwiches!  Thanks Cara & Dan!

1:40 pm:  Pat Farmer and Rupert Jee brought pizza!!

1:45 pm:  Maria Pope brought snacks!

1:50 pm:  Mike McIntee brought bagels! 

1:55 pm:  Back to the line.  We’re getting our message out loud and clear!  “No pay, no…”

2:00 pm:  And, that’s a day.

Seriously, thanks to all Late Show staffers for showing your support.  We miss you!  To find out more details about this strike, please log on to www.wgaeast.org - you’ll be glad you did.
9:02 am est

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Day 10: Disney Store

BY ERIC STANGEL AND JUSTIN STANGEL

The WGAE picketed (along with supporting unions) in front of the Disney Store on 55th Street and 5th Avenue. Disney owns ABC and other cable networks. The picket line also happened to stretch in front of a Coca-Cola retail store, which I'm sure led them to think "What the hell do we have to do with this thing?"
---------------------------------------------------------------------
The picket sign of the day comes from Guild member Scott Brown. Take that, Disney!
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(Technically all of Walt Disney is frozen- not just his head. This is really a Ted Williams reference, since the Splendid Splinter's head only was cryogenically preserved, but we'll let it slide. And also, I'm not sure why Mr. Disney's frozen head would be crying. Is the sign suggesting the late Mr. Disney is hurting from the writers striking in front of his store?)

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Crazy Observation

When we picket, usually there are a few hundred people marching in a gated area. There are union people with clipboards walking around, an area where you can get a picket sign, and a table with food for everyone involved. The table is covered with containers of coffee, donuts, sandwiches, and water. I have noticed many New Yorker gather to watch us march and chant out carefully written protests. They also see a table of food, which for some reason they think, “This must be for everyone” and they help themselves to whatever they want. I don’t know why they would think this because they have to open up a large, heavy section of metal gate, and push through dozens and dozens of chanting, marching protesters to get to the powered sugar donut.

---------------------------------------------------------------------
It was a very strong and energetic showing today. We were touched to be joined all day by Director Jerry Foley and retired Late Show writer Gerard Mulligan.

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Late Show Executive Producer Barbara Gaines brought pastries courtesy of Patisserie Claude. 
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Executive Producer Maria Pope and Production Coordinator Mike McIntee also brought tons of food
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A large number of Late Show staff and crew came to show their support. We cannot begin to tell you how important these people are to us.
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Kathy Mavrikakis brought a giant jar of home made WGA Strike Cookies.

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We know what you’re thinking. “Kathy Mavrikakis’ Homemade WGA Strike Cookies look delicious. How can I make Kathy Mavrikakis’ Homemade WGA Strike Cookies?” It’s just this easy!


KATHY MAVRIKAKIS’ WGA STRIKE COOKIES

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup (2 sticks, 1/2 pound) butter, softened

3/4 cup granulated [white] sugar

3/4 cup packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 eggs

2 cups (12-ounce package) Chocolate Chips

1 cup chopped nuts


COMBINE flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla in large mixer bowl. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition; gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in morsels and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.

BAKE in preheated 375-degree [Fahrenheit] oven for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.


Thanks Kathy. If Kathy, or any other Late Show staff member brings homemade baked goods, we will be sure to include the recipe to give you that WGA Strike feeling in your own home!

---------------------------------------------------------------------
People ask "What's it like on the picket line?" Here's a story from head writer Justin Stangel...

This happened on Tuesday.

I walked off the line to put my sweatshirt in my bag. I was standing next to one of the many girls with clipboards taking the names of the WGA members protesting. Not to sound mean at all, but a giant, fat, disgusting, hulk of a woman pushed her way up to one of the clipboard girls. Here is what happened.


HULK WOMAN

Where do you sign if you are against the writers?


CLIPBOARD GIRL

Excuse me?


HULK WOMAN

Where do you sign if you are against the writers?


CLIPBOARD GIRL

Against the writers?


HULK WOMAN

Yes! Where do you sign if you are against the writers?


CLIPBOARD GIRL

Why are you against the writers?


HULK WOMAN

TV writers are ruining literacy in this country.


I LEANED IN


JUSTIN

Look lady. You’re not helping. Why don’t you just leave?


HULK WOMAN

Leave? Why should I leave? What are you doing here?


JUSTIN

Fighting for my job!


HULK WOMAN (yelling)

Maybe it’s time you try another job!


JUSTIN

Maybe it’s time you try a salad!


HULK WOMAN LEAVES IN A HUFF

---------------------------------------------------------------------
Couple of Random Thoughts

The Late Show is on strike
Many Broadway shows just south of us are also on strike now that the stagehands have walked out.
Some good might come of this, if it keeps making its way downtown, maybe this whole thing will put the Knicks out of their misery.

By the way- I feel like I am having an affair with Nikki Finke. I am spending much more time with her than my wife

9:05 pm est

ALTERNATIVES TO TELEVISION
By Joe Grossman

Sadly, the AMPTP's refusal to offer writers a fair contract has driven the late-night shows off the air, and unless a resolution is reached soon, prime-time shows will follow. On the bright side, the lack of fresh television programming will give Americans more time than ever to pursue one of their favorite pastimes: not reading. As someone who has diligently avoided reading for more than three decades, I compiled a list of books that I look forward to not reading in the coming weeks. Some recommendations:

To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee

The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini

Wizard's First Rule (Sword Of Truth), by Terry Goodkind

You On a Diet, by Dr. Mehmet Oz and Michael Roizen

Eat, Pray, Love, by Elizabeth Gilbert

Toxic Bachelors, by Danielle Steel

Become a Better You, by Joel Osteen

The Universe in a Single Atom, by the Dalai Lama

Slash, by Slash with Anthony Bozza

The Brothers Karamazov, by Fyodor Dostoevsky (already didn't read it in high school, but it seemed worth re-not-reading)
8:15 pm est

RICHARD BELZER: FRIEND TO WRITERS EVERYWHERE
By Lee Ellenberg

As stated before on this blog, Richard Belzer was kind and warm-hearted enough to show up at the picket line last week to hand out delicious chicken parm sandwiches.  Well, Mr. Belzer's concern for the writers knows no end.  Last night, at around 3am, I woke up to find Richard Belzer standing in my bedroom.  I asked what he was doing.  He replied he was concerned that the stress and anxiety of the strike may prevent me from getting a good night's sleep.  He then proceeded to climb into bed with me and give me an eyebrow massage until I drifted off into lovely, sugar-coated slumber.  Thanks "The Belz!" 
8:14 pm est

GEORGE W. BUSH JOKE-OF-THE-DAY
BY TOM RUPRECHT

Because of the writers' strike, many of you are hungry for some political humor. I thought I'd help fill the void by giving you a daily excerpt from my book "George W. Bush: An Unauthorized Oral History." Here's today's joke:

In 2003 President Bush came to England for a state visit. He seemed to enjoy being here. He told me that driving on the left side of the road reminded him of his drinking days.--Tony Blair, Former British Prime Minister

Tom's book "George W. Bush: An Unauthorized Oral History" is available on http://www.amazon.com/ and other quality bookstores
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6:46 pm est

Talking To Children About The Writers’ Strike

by Steve Young


The writers’ strike can be stressful and confusing for children as well as adults.  Kids often have questions about the situation that need to be handled delicately.  Here are a few sample questions and non-judgmental answers.


“Why are the writers and the big media companies fighting?”


“Sometimes two parts of the entertainment business love each other, but have trouble getting along.  The details of the argument aren’t important.  All you need to know is that the producers are trying to bludgeon the writers with bats, take their last few pennies, and leave them bleeding in the street.”


“Is the fight because of something I’ve done?”


“Yes, of course.  All trouble is due to your bad behavior.”


“Will the writers and the producers ever get back together?”


“We hope so.  The writers are ready to sit down and talk whenever the big companies are willing to have a real discussion about DVD income and digital revenue sharing.  That’s just a fancy way of saying you know who to blame if this thing drags on.


“Do you still love me?”


“The Writers Guild will always love you very, very much.  The media companies would sell you to the Gypsies in a second if they thought it would boost their share price.”


“Can you bring back “Walker, Texas Ranger”?”


“You’re trying my patience.  Go to bed.”    

5:26 pm est

Letter To The Editor- New York Daily News
The New York Daily News recently printed a letter from Eric M. Norcross which stated "Tina Fey has absolutely no business picketing in front of the headquarters of the company that has treated her so dearly. She makes more money in a day than most men and women make in a month. The writers who have "put down their pens" should be happy about their success and that they are better off than a good number of struggling writers who would give anything for a break."

Late Show writer Steve Young had this letter in response which appears in today's New York Daily News

Not all rich - or employed

Manhattan: To Voicer Eric M. Norcross: I'm sure Tina Fey is thankful for her success, but she's also aware that in any given year about half of all Writers Guild members are unemployed. The majority don't earn six-figure salaries. The residuals we're fighting for are crucial for allowing thousands to survive between jobs.

Steve Young

5:15 pm est

Leafleting....

By Matt Roberts

Each day spent on the picket line has introduced me to a wealth of first-time experiences and opportunities.  Yesterday?  Leafleting!

Tuesday morning, I was handpicked to leaflet outside the New York Stock Exchange, illustrating that it’s in the financial interest of the market for Hollywood to be strong, and that the industry’s strength can only be maintained with a quick resolution to the strike.

Although it sounded exotic, as it turns out, ‘leafleting’ is just handing out photocopies of the same sheet of paper to reluctant, and sometimes frightened, strangers.

I was criticized by my fellow leafleteers for being too passive in my approach.  Rather than force a leaflet on someone, I’d pretend to accidentally drop it in front of her.  When she’d pick up the page for me, I’d say, ‘No, that’s all right – you keep it.’

Often my ‘soft sell’ meant waiting for passersby to come to me – usually those approaching were friendly, foreign tourists, looking for the nearest Starbucks.  I produced a pen, jotted directions on a leaflet, and sent them off, well equipped to support the WGA upon returning to their homeland.

My greatest weakness, though, was my tendency to identify with those passing by on the street.  When one corporate type declined my leaflet, saying, ‘I already have too many papers to read,’ instead of insistently replying, ‘But, none this important!’ I said, ‘I understand completely.’

Clearly, I have room to improve.

Hopefully the strike won’t last long enough for me to get good at this.
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9:15 am est

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

2 Weeks of Late Show Punchlines
We weren't sure there would be a strike, but we wanted our viewers to be prepared. Here's a piece written by Joe Grossman which aired just before the strike was called

10:45 pm est

BILL SCHEFT'S STRIKE-RELATED DAVE-TYPE MONOLOGUE JOKE OF THE DAY.
Everyone in New York City is behind the writers. Today, I was walking through Central Park, and I saw a squirrel picketing his nuts.
-Bill Scheft
9:33 pm est

Fun With The Writers Guild Whistle

by Steve Young

Guild representatives have been giving these whistles out to picketers so we can make an annoying racket.  An annoying racket is fine, but after trooping around for a couple hours this morning I’ve developed a dazzling repertoire of more subtle effects:

webassets/fixedwhistle.jpg

    The Wacky Snore.  Like in a cartoon, or maybe like Curly in “The Three Stooges.”  I’m not enough of a Stooge-ologist to be sure.  (Note to self: use free time during the strike to get up to speed on the Stooges.)

    The Sad Dog.  Whining piteously, possibly in outrage at the unreasonable negotiating stance taken by the big media companies.

    The Seagull.  Majestic, soaring free, circling a garbage barge that’s being towed out to sea.

    The One-Note “Jingle Bells.”  If we can subject the media moguls to just fifteen minutes of this, we’ll break their wills and end the strike immediately.

    The One-And-A-Half Note “Jingle Bells.”  Skillful variations in tonguing and air pressure can produce slight variations in pitch.  Extremely festive.

This is a work in progress!  Depending on the length of the strike, I may be adding hundreds more! 


7:13 pm est

Day 9: Wall Street
A strong day of picketing today. The Writers Guild of America East gathered in the Wall Street area.

The big addition on the lines today- Nametags.

Global warming made it a less uncomfortable day outside. No one wants to be on strike, but at least it wasn't 35 degrees and windy. So thanks to those who disrespected Mother Earth for so long. We're now reaping the benefits.

My brother Justin and I were swarmed by the German media. Correspondents from the Rheinische Post and Frankfurter Rundschau were kind enough to ask us our thoughts on what we were fighting for. We currently don't subscribe to either publication. If anyone out there does, let us know. We'd like to show our parents.

This website has gotten a lot of attention and support in the last 24 hours. We have been featured in Variety.com New York Magazine Online, Nikki Finke's Deadline Hollywood Daily and Defamer.

We have also received a ton of supportive emails. Some of them are now featured in the mailbag section located on the top toolbar. The ones by crazy people have been discarded.

We have also gotten tremendous support from the Late Show staff and crew. We miss all of them very much and hope this is resolved soon so we can all get back to work. They are the best in the business.

If you like what you're reading here, tell your friends and keep checking in. The writers will be submitting material to this site throughout the day.

Tomorrow the WGA is picketing in front of the Disney store on 55th Street and 5th Avenue from 10am to 2pm. Time to open up some whoopass on Winnie The Pooh...

Eric Stangel
5:12 pm est

It might be my fault...
IT'S STARTING TO OCCUR TO ME THAT THIS MAY ALL BE MY FAULT

The reason there's a strike is a handful of studio muckety-mucks don't want to give the writers their well-deserved money for Internet usage. Why would these tycoons exhibit such hostility towards friendly writers? What did we ever do to them?

Well, let me take you back to June 2000. I'm standing on the floor of the Staples Center minutes before the Lakers-Pacers NBA Finals. I'm desperately trying to shoot a few jokes with Biff Henderson before tip-off. As we're shooting a (hilarious) joke, the bit is ruined when someone from behind me yells "Hey Biff! How's it going?!"

Now when you shoot with Biff at a sporting event, your shot is interrupted approximately every 20 seconds by some drunken loudmouth screaming "Hey, Biff!!!"

So, I must admit, I was a little frustrated. I angrily spun around and screamed, "Quiet! We're trying to shoot here!" Instead of being greeted by a drunken lout, however, I found myself staring at CBS President/CEO/Muckety-Muck Les Moonves wearing a suit whose value is more than what the WGA is asking for in this strike.

He shot me a look of pure hate that I normally only get from women I'm dating. It was a look that said, "Mark my words, someday you'll pay for this!"

Mr. Moonves, I'm sorry for getting angry. I thought you were a drunken loudmouth. Wait, that didn't come out right at all. But I'm sorry. Very, very sorry. Very, very, very sorry. It's just I was so focused on creating top-notch comedy for your fine network, I didn't realize who you were. Let's just forget it, sir. I want to get back to creating top-notch comedy for your fine network. Thank you.

Tom Ruprecht
3:16 pm est

STRIKE BITES

By Jeremy Weiner

Last week, while picketing in the bitter cold outside of the Chelsea Piers studio where “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” is produced, I bumped into Richard Belzer a.k.a. Detective Munch.  Richard was graciously handing out hot, fresh chicken parmigiana sandwiches to striking writers.  I took one and, I have to say, it was arguably the finest sandwich I’ve ever enjoyed as a participant in a temporary work stoppage.  It also got me thinking.  If the AMPTP forces this strike to continue, might I encounter other celebrities with free food on future picket lines?  If that's the case, here is my wish list [in no particular order]:

CELEBRITY                                                 FOOD

Tom Selleck                                                 Ham Salad

Greta Van Susteren                                     Paella
                                                                    [no shellfish, I’m allergic]

Brian Dennehy                                             Tzatziki

Meat Loaf                                                     Meat Loaf

Lou Diamond Phillips                                   Corn Nuts

9:35 am est

Monday, November 12, 2007

NOTES FOR DAY 8 OF THE WRITERS GUILD OF AMERICA STRIKE

BY ERIC STANGEL AND JUSTIN STANGEL

•    THERE WAS NO WGAE PICKETING SCHEDULED FOR TODAY

•    THE WGAE WILL BE PICKETING TUESDAY FROM 10:00 AM TO 2:00 PM AT THE NORTHEAST CORNER OF BATTERY PARK, CORNER OF STATE STREET AND BOWLING GREEN

•    NO WORD YET IF RICHARD BELZER WILL ONCE AGAIN BE SERVING HOT SANDWICHES

RUMORS OF THE DAY: 

•    HOLLYWOOD AGENTS ARE TRYING TO BROKER BACKCHANNEL DISCUSSIONS BETWEEN WRITERS AND PRODUCERS

•    BEFORE TALKS BROKE DOWN IN LAST WEEK’S 11TH HOUR DISCUSSIONS, BOTH SIDES BRIEFLY AGREED MARIE OSMOND IS FABULOUS IN THIS SEASON’S “DANCING WITH THE STARS”

•    DISCOVERED AT LAST WEDNESDAY’S PICKET LINES WAS “MIAMI VICE” STAR PHILIP MICHAEL THOMAS. HE HAS BEEN PICKETING SINCE THE LAST STRIKE IN 1988. SEEMS NO ONE TOLD HIM THE STRIKE ENDED.

•    EDDIE ZICK, A WRITER FOR SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE, AND BETH ANDERSON, A WRITER FOR “PENN AND TELLER: BULLSHIT” MET AT MONDAY’S PICKET LINE AT 30 ROCKEFELLER PLAZA AND FELL IN LOVE. WE HEAR THEY ARE ENGAGED. CONGRATULATIONS. NO DATE HAS BEEN SET. HE PROPOSED BY WRITING “2,4,6,8 LET’S GET HITCHED AND PROCREATE” ON HIS SIGN



HERE'S HOW YOU CAN TELL YOU'RE READING TOO MUCH STRIKE COVERAGE.

•    IF YOU NO LONGER CRINGE WHEN YOU SEE AGENTS REFERRED TO AS “TEN PERCENTERS,” YOU'RE READING TOO MUCH STRIKE COVERAGE

•    IF YOU DON'T MAKE ANY DECISIONS WITHOUT FIRST CHECKING WITH NIKKI FINKE, YOU'RE READING TOO MUCH STRIKE COVERAGE

•    IF YOUR FAMILY TREE IS A STRAIGHT LINE, YOU MIGHT BE A REDNECK


9:57 pm est

CLASSIC MOVIE SCENES IF THERE WERE NO WRITERS

It's time for...

CLASSIC MOVIE SCENES IF THERE WERE NO WRITERS by Lee Ellenberg

"Casablanca"

INT./EXT. AIRPORT HANGAR - NIGHT

RICK


ILSA


RICK


ILSA


Ilsa's eyes fill with tears.  Rick puts his hand to her chin and raises her face to meet his own.

RICK


Ilsa boards the plane. 


OUT.

9:12 pm est

Is This A Statement?

I just returned from some meetings about the writers strike and was looking forward to a quiet evening at home.  I don't know who's responsible, my coworkers or the AMPTP, but look at what was in my living room!

webassets/bobapt.jpg

Seriously, this strike is no laughing matter.  Check out www.wgaeast.org to see what we're fighting for.

-Bob Borden 

8:33 pm est

MY ENCOUNTER WITH WRITING ROYALTY

by Lee Ellenberg

This has been a very rough time for the Late Show writers.  We are away from the job we love and from the people with whom we love working.  But one small positive aspect of this otherwise awful time has been the privilege to meet on the picket lines some of the greatest minds ever to have sat in front of a legal pad, typewriter or word processor. 

Last week, I was fortunate to meet the great Andrew Bergman.  Here is a verbatim transcript of our encounter:

MR. BERGMAN: Hi, I'm Andrew Bergman.

ME: Wow, what an honor to meet you!  You wrote "The Jerk"!

MR. BERGMAN: I wrote "The Jerk"?

ME: Yeah, you did!

MR. BERGMAN: No, I didn't.

ME: Crap.

Note: Andrew Bergman is the award-winning screenwriter of several classic films, including The In-Laws, Fletch and Blazing Saddles.
Lee Ellenberg is an ass.



6:40 pm est

Writers Guild Strike FAQ
by Jeremy Weiner

Q: What is the purpose of the strike?

The purpose of the strike is for writers to withhold their written work and force the companies and networks to realize their success is dependent upon returning to the bargaining table and negotiating a fair contract.  It is also intended to help writers get a jump on their holiday shopping.

Q: How long will the strike last?

Until the writers achieve a fair contract and/or Lou Ferrigno is elected president.

Q: Why did negotiations with the AMPTP break down?

Negotiations broke down when the AMPTP was unwilling to put “real” proposals on the table that compensate writers for work in new media.  Also, AMPTP lead negotiator Nick Counter insisted on bargaining in his underpants.

Q: What is life like on the picket line?

It’s actually far more dangerous than the media is reporting.  Careless handling of picket signs has resulted in several mild corneal abrasions.  For more informaiton visit http://www.webmd.com/eye-health/corneal-abrasions.

Q: Will the networks attempt to use the writers' strike, particularly if it is an extended strike, to cancel “Airwolf”?

“Airwolf” was cancelled in 1987.  

Q: What does FAQ stand for?

I have no idea.

Q: I still have questions. What should I do?

Call the Vatican switchboard at +39.06.6982.  Ask for Benedict.


12:15 pm est

Sunday, November 11, 2007

A message from Late Show writer Bill Scheft....

This letter originally was posted on the late show newsgroup and the late show website.



I am the union rep for the show, and felt compelled to bring you up to date on the writers strike. Day Four on the picket line. Our guys have been so much better represented out there than all the other NY shows. I am really proud of them.


Quickly, lest you think we are a bunch of spoiled brats just looking for a raise, the big issue, money from original content shown on the Internet and other new media, is our way of replacing the money we are losing over the disappearing residuals. Residuals are not a bonus. They are the way writers live when they are between jobs. The standard writers contact is up for renewal every 13 weeks. You can have a five- year contract, but they can let you go every 13 weeks without paying you any more as long as they give you a month's notice. That is the deal we all enter into. There are 12,000 writers in the guild. You need to make $30,000 a year in guild earnings to keep your health insurance. Last year, 6000 didn't reach that figure. Half.


I have been lucky enough to have a job for 16 years. That simply does not happen. So this is what we are fighting for. Believe me, we would love to be in the office, writing fun facts, actives with Rupert, illegally doctoring footage or downloading porn, but this is the frontline fight for all the other union contracts that come after us. The late night writers are the first ones affected by a strike, and the ONLY ones who will never recoup the money we lose because we do 10 times as many new shows per year as any drama or sitcom. But we go out in support of our fellow union members and pray this thing ends soon.


One more thing. To a man, all of the writers are deeply concerned about the collateral damage if we stay out too long. We think of the 150 people who work at the Late Show whose fight this is not and believe they will be taken care of. They are all embarrassingly supportive of us. No one any more so than Dave. It is quite humbling.


Sorry to be so serious, but this is serious business. I wanted to write you people because this site has loyally and relentlessly followed the show since we came to CBS. I felt you were owed as much of an explanation as anyone outside the negotiation room can give.


Feel free to ask any questions and I will try to respond. Thanks.


Bill Scheft 

10:52 pm est


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A message from Late Show writer Bill Scheft....

This letter originally was posted on the late show newsgroup and the late show website.



I am the union rep for the show, and felt compelled to bring you up to date on the writers strike. Our guys have been so much better represented on the picket line than all the other NY shows. I am really proud of them.


Quickly, lest you think we are a bunch of spoiled brats just looking for a raise, the big issue, money from original content shown on the Internet and other new media, is our way of replacing the money we are losing over the disappearing residuals. Residuals are not a bonus. They are the way writers live when they are between jobs. The standard writers contact is up for renewal every 13 weeks. You can have a five- year contract, but they can let you go every 13 weeks without paying you any more as long as they give you a month's notice. That is the deal we all enter into. There are 12,000 writers in the guild. You need to make $30,000 a year in guild earnings to keep your health insurance. Last year, 6000 didn't reach that figure. Half.


I have been lucky enough to have a job for 16 years. That simply does not happen. So this is what we are fighting for. Believe me, we would love to be in the office, writing fun facts, actives with Rupert, illegally doctoring footage or downloading porn, but this is the frontline fight for all the other union contracts that come after us. The late night writers are the first ones affected by a strike, and the ONLY ones who will never recoup the money we lose because we do 10 times as many new shows per year as any drama or sitcom. But we go out in support of our fellow union members and pray this thing ends soon.


One more thing. To a man, all of the writers are deeply concerned about the collateral damage if we stay out too long. We think of the 150 people who work at the Late Show whose fight this is not and believe they will be taken care of. They are all embarrassingly supportive of us. No one any more so than Dave. It is quite humbling.


Sorry to be so serious, but this is serious business. I wanted to write you people because this site has loyally and relentlessly followed the show since we came to CBS. I felt you were owed as much of an explanation as anyone outside the negotiation room can give.


Feel free to ask any questions and I will try to respond. Thanks.


Bill Scheft 

webassets/lsonstrike.jpg


Be sure to get in touch so we know you're out there!