Actors OK 'Good Deal' From SAG

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.

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