Hollywood actors overwhelmingly approved their new contract Feb. 28, ending the threat that the industry would be thrown into turmoil by forcing negotiators to return to the bargaining table with a de

LOS ANGELES (The Hollywood Reporter) -- Hollywood actors overwhelmingly approved their new contract Feb. 28, ending the threat that the industry would be thrown into turmoil by forcing negotiators to return to the bargaining table with a deadline approaching.

The deal negotiated on behalf of members of the Screen Actors' Guild and American Federation of Television and Radio Artists was accepted by a 76.5%-23.5% margin, the unions said after the ballots were counted by Seattle-based Integrity Voting Systems. About 30% of the 119,000 union members who received ballots returned them, a number consistent with previous contract votes.

Leaders say the $200 million package is the most lucrative in the unions' history. The three-year deal covering SAG's TV/theatrical agreement and AFTRA's Exhibit A includes gains for every category of actor, from stunt coordinators to background players. Highlights include an additional $60 million in health and pension-fund contributions and protection of residuals for actors on the WB Network and UPN.