Nov 5 2007Tina Fey Talks Writer's Guild Strike

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With the Writer's Guild going on strike today, who better to turn to than 30 Rock writer/actor Tina Fey to find out what's going on and how it will affect us? Thank god that Martin Mull-looking idiot from The Insider had the same thought, and interviewed her picketing outside Rockefeller Center.

In short, it means shows written on a day-to-day or week-to-week basis, like SNL, The Daily Show, and late-night talk shows are effectively in re-runs starting today, while pre-filmed showed probably have a few months left of new material.

Thankfully, reality shows, probably Oprah (no one writes her crying or giving gifts to the audience, right?), and CSI (which is written by chimps) will continue churning out television.

See the interview under the cut. I particularly like the part where she panders to those who would only respond to Desperate Housewives and Grey's Anatomy references.

Reader Comments

First!

That is one hot mama!

First!!!!!!!!!!

Yikes this could be the cure for insomnia

30 Rock is the only show I care about. Thanks for the post!

Yep - no post-Holiday TV-the worst movies ever for the next 5 years (Can it be worse than Superman Returns?)-and we'll still end up funding their royalties through nickel-a-diming by every hack middle man down the retail chain. F U Hollywood! I hope your trophy wives sue you and you all end up in the poorhouse with syphilis. I'm going outside.

tina fey ain't that great from the waist down.

a girl i know's first paying WGA job as a staff writer on a half-hour sitcom pays her in excess of $200k/year. i like her, but have some difficulty manufacturing sympathy for most of these highly-overpaid, opportunistic, narcissistic hedonists whose writing is frankly unimpressive.

Tina Fey should have been fired from SNL years and years ago.. Her acting blows, and her writing must blow, cause SNL has blown at least as long as she's been with them.

I agree to an extent, through with buzz, but Fey is right -- they make plenty to live on, but the companies that distribute the DVDs make money hand over fist and continue to cut benefits to widen their profit margins.

no one commented on this because tina fey is smart and the story is interesting and relevant.

ultimately, these strikes effectively raise commissions paid to agents and managers, marginally increase the amounts paid to writers and turn people away from the medium at-large.

through the buzz: unless you work on a big network sitcom, you usually get paid the minimum for a TV script, which is about $75k. While this _seems_ like a lot, there's also the issue that most writers don't get their name on a script until their 30's, and about 30% of writers at any given time are unemployed.

The WGA is there to take care of writers and provide health insurance through the good times and the bad times, whether they're writing or not. They're trying to reach a fair deal with companies like NBC, who recently pulled all their shows from the iTunes Store because they wanted to charge _more_ for shows. And they demand that their writers write online promotional content for free, _AND_ they make them write stupid product integration scenes. For free. Even though a few writers receive incredible paychecks, the people who sign them are much better off.

Rossafur: Even though the show's quality degraded around when Tina became head writer, I think it's more due to Will Ferrell leaving and other actors phoning it in that the show didn't do well. After all, Tina wrote the "Census Taker" sketch with Christopher Walken, which was probably one of the best sketches in the last 10 years.

Also, 30 Rock is the best comedy on TV after Curb Your Enthusiasm.

where the hell is this "interview" that was advertised? I was told that if I went under the cut, I would be subjected to an interview, either in video, audio, or text format. Yet, I come in here and BAM. No interview. That is false advertising. What the hell.

Mothafucka! Jonah Hill was supposed to host SNL on the 17th!!!! Now he can't!! He's sad!!!!!! I was so flippin' excited to see him on SNL and now he can't! I hate this!! when this shits over they better reschedule him.. Ah, i love JOnah hill!

I WAS going to write a great zinger here about the huge hideous scar on her face, but alas, I am now on strike.

i don't know, morley, you sound like a writer's assistant who's had to sit around listening to his boss take orders from the guild for too long. certainly, writers' rights should be upheld. most of the television and moreso, the feature writers i know, are very well-educated, affluent, privileged people. most of them are very well-connected. some of them are funny. few are original. most are competent self-promoters. many have, as have we all, been forced to sit on desks for years and i understand that. similarly, i understand that they're forced to abide by the guild/mafia or take a hike. i don't have more sympathy for the studios, believe me, but i don't see how their jobs are particularly difficult and i don't see where they take anything particularly seriously -- other than their own prominence.

as for 30 Rock, i'm in agreement with your OPINION.


"See the interview under the cut"... How? Could we see the lazy-ass writer provide a link? How me s'posed to stay informed???!!! HULK ANGRY!!! HULK SMASH!!!

I'd bang her.

I'd say that 99 percent of we Americans are working our lives away for scraps while the stockholders or whatever get rich and fat. More power to ya' Writer's Guild! They think that they're so important, let's see what they can do without your product.

Aye, fight and you may die, run, and you'll live... at least a while. And dying in your beds, many years from now, would you be willin' to trade ALL the days, from this day to that, for one chance, just one chance, to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take... OUR FREEDOM!
GIVE 'EM HELL WG!!!
Oh, and in return for my support, stop writing for CSI. Oh and please take the lives of those responsible for Dancing with the Stars, American Idol, Are you Smarter than a Fifth Grader?, Deal or No Deal and the multitudes of reality shit on TV. Maybe put their heads on top the picket signs and march around a bit.....

I love Tina Fey!

i love tina fey too!

Boo-hoo ... "We ONLY make 200 to 500 thousand dollars a year, we want more" Tina Fuck Fey is a hook nosed jigsaw faced assclown! How much $ did she take home last year- how much will bring down this year- 2-3-4 mil – more??? ... I really doubt she's going to be in lines at soup kitchen anytime soon!

I'd fire every last one of those fucking ingrates ... I bet there are at least 50 people standing in line for each of there powder puff jobs, & they're probable a 100 times funnier too.

The few minutes of 30 Rock that I have seen, were horrible.

If you do not think you get paid enough to write scripts, get a real job.

The WG is absolutly right to go on strike. Yes writers are paid decent amounts of money, but the companies get paid more. This strike is based on the idea that companies are running our world, and we should attempt to put a stop to it. FYI, unlike most jobs, writing requires life experience and skill, networks won't be able to find decent substitute writers for the next 40 years if they keep this strike up.

I dont get it, just fire them all, not like they are so fucking amazing anyways! For every since 2-bit writer in Hollywood, there are 50 young even more talented writers waiting in the wings. SACK THEM!

Tina Fey seems very bright and easy going, but I don't really understand why she has so much free reign. It seems to me she was largely responsible for SNL's slide. After having to watch her pontificate under the veneer of comedy like on Weekend Update, I had to stop watching for awhile until she left the show. It's SNL, if I wanted political satire, I'd go to Comedy Central. Now, there's 30 Rock, which no one watches and is not funny, and I still have to see her in American Express commercials. She must be very smart because she's convincing someone to keep her on t.v. with marginal talent.

Her hair looks awesome.

As for the strike - eh, I have nothing to do with Hollywood, but generally, if studios are on one side of any dispute, I'm inclined to sympathize with whoever's on the other side. Studios throw millions at crappy shows and movies and "unscripted" programming, but now I'm supposed to take their side in a money dispute with writers? Whatever you think about writing on TV (and I agree a lot of it blows, big time), the fact is, it's work. Somebody's gotta do it, and if the studios make money off of it, so should everyone else.

My feeling is, if the studios can afford to spend millions on crap like "Fred Claus" (and I know it hasn't come out yet, so maybe it's the funniest movie ever made about Santa Claus's brother who we never knew existed, but somehow I doubt it), they can afford to chisel some more money off their giant pile of money and give it to the people who actually write the crap. I haven't noticed any studio heads living in a trailer park and driving a Ford Taurus, so I think they have plenty of money to go around. Yeah, I know all the studios are owned by giant conglomerates that have stockholders, blah blah, whatever.

And blaming Tina Fey for SNL's downward spiral is just stupid. That show hasn't been worth watching for at least 20 years. Every now and then, they'll have an enjoyable skit, but mostly, it's an hour of suck, regardless of Fey's participation. She's not the only writer on the show.

RE pay for writers: I imagine most of these people live in CA, in the general vicinity of Hollywood. $200K there ain't like $200K anywhere else except some other high-dollar locale, like NYC or San Fran. I'm not saying we should feel sorry for them, per se, but I'm not gonna tell someone whose job I've never done how much money they should make. I don't think pro athletes are worth many millions of dollars per year, but someone does, so that's all that really matters. It's called negotiation. They have the same right to it as everyone else.

LL
Of course they should have the write to negotiate. On the other hand, the writers who are happy with the situation and want to work cannot do that write now. What about their rights?

Curse the lack of a preview button.

For those bitching about no video, turn ad blockers off!

LL, I said Tina was largely responsible not solely responsible for SNL going downhill. And why is it stupid to blame her? She was the head writer for almost a decade.

maybe we should just stop watching tv?

Judging from some of the comments here, some people won't be happy until every American is making minimum wage. So some of them are making good money. I am happy for them. Its great that their are still some WORKING people in this country who can make a good paycheck. I support the guild writers just as I support any American who is fighting to maintain a living wage.

I like 30 Rock. It is one of the funniest shows I have ever seen. Anybody who thinks its not funny should have their heads examined.
Also Tina Fey is hot, smart and funny

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