Writers’ Strike hits BU as college students chant in opposition to Warner Bros. CEO

Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav confronted boos and jeers from viewers members throughout his Boston College graduation speech on Sunday in the course of the ongoing Hollywood writers strike.

Picketers and viewers members broke out in chants, together with, “pay your writers!” as Zaslav spoke about his profession expertise and the way he rose as much as grow to be WBD’s president. Crowds yelled, “we don’t need you right here!” and “shut up Zaslav!” as he spoke.

Throughout his speech, Zaslav suggested college students that “some folks will likely be searching for a battle, however don’t be the one they discover it with,” which precipitated an eruption of boos and cheers from the gang. He then instructed college students to “deal with folks’s good qualities,” which was a tip he mentioned he obtained from the late Common Electrical CEO Jack Welch.

As he wrapped up his tackle — advising college students to “determine what you’re good at” and “present up to your associates” — viewers members shouted expletives at him.

Zaslav, who wore sun shades in the course of the length of speech, didn’t straight tackle the strike. However he might have been talking to the picketers and protesters when he wrapped up, saying, “I hope to see all of you — and I imply all of you — alongside the way in which. The journey of life. There’s nothing higher.”

Zaslav addressed the protests in a press release despatched to The Washington Put up Sunday afternoon.

“I’m grateful to my alma mater, Boston College, for inviting me to be a part of right now’s graduation and for giving me an honorary diploma, and, as I’ve typically mentioned, I’m immensely supportive of writers and hope the strike is resolved quickly and in a manner that they really feel acknowledges their worth,” he mentioned.

Boston College didn’t instantly reply to request for remark.

The Writers Guild of America, which first introduced its strike on Could 2, mentioned in a press release Sunday that the gang’s response sends a “very clear” message.

“Zaslav and all the firm chiefs have to barter an settlement that addresses the very actual challenges WGA members face, that make it attainable for writers — and aspiring writers — to construct and maintain careers creating the content material that the businesses depend on for income and revenue,” WGA mentioned in a press release.

The WGA mentioned it will picket the BU ceremony after the university confirmed the WBD chief government could be giving a graduation speech.

Film and TV screenwriters started hanging after talks with producers broke down. The WGA is in search of higher pay and new contracts amid the streaming period of content material, in addition to safety in opposition to AI-generated content material. The work stoppage has already impacted the leisure trade with tv and movie productions going darkish.

“Writers Guild members are on strike as a result of corporations, together with Warner Bros. Discovery, refused to ensure any stage of weekly employment in episodic tv, tried to pivot late night time writers to a day price, stonewalled on free work on script revisions for screenwriters, and refused to even talk about our proposal on the existential menace AI poses to all writers,” the guild mentioned in a press release, per the Hollywood Reporter.

The WGA didn’t instantly reply to request for remark.

Zaslav has commented on the writers’ strike up to now. He instructed CNBC in early Could that nice writers are wanted for good storytelling and that everyone, together with writers, “deserves to be paid pretty.”

“Let’s try to get this resolved,” he instructed CNBC’s “Squawk Box” on Could 5. “Let’s do it in a manner that the writers really feel that they’re valued, which they’re, and so they’re compensated pretty. After which off we go. Let’s inform nice tales collectively.”

Zaslav thinks it’ll take extra than simply time to get the writers and producers to satisfy collectively on a deal.

“All of us got here into this enterprise as a result of we love storytelling, we wish to entertain and once we’re at our greatest, we get an opportunity to have an effect on the tradition,” he mentioned. “Virtually all of us obtained into this enterprise with loads of sacrifice in an effort to be a part of that journey. And in order that’s what’s going to deliver us collectively.”

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