“Every place has a completely different personality, like, Sony is kinda angry, Fox is where all the really cool people hang out and [CBS] Radford gets started at, literally, 5 am…” Stephen Scaia said last Wednesday.
The Jericho writer was giving picketing pointers to Joshua Jackson (the dreamboat from Dawson’s Creek) and Ashley Scott (the hottie patoddie in Jericho). The group had just retired from striking at Universal Studios, where the star power of SAG along with WGA marchers made the studio hip for the day.
Today was “Below-the-Line Picket Day” and Fox had a high potential of being “uncool” for the day. Assistants and more assistants were out marching as well as a few teamsters.
Along with them were these folks, who rumor has it will give it up for only 8 cents.
“My boss had me get him water,” Kacey Arnold laughs.
The beverage gofer works as an assistant for writing partners Jeff Ventimilia and Josh Sternin of Touchstone T.V. Ventimilia joked to Arnold, “Are you gonna bring me my lunch?” on his way to the strike.
The writer's assistant says she’s lucky that Disney has been kind enough to continue to pay half of her salary. Fox’s assistants got laid off the first week of the strike.
At Fox’s main gate at Pico and Motor, the strikers did not disappoint the “cool” status. The uppities were out to support the lowlies and Larry David (Seinfield), Eric Roth (Forest Gump), Steve Zalilian (Schindler’s List), James Brooks (As Good It Gets) and Seth MacFarlane (Family Guy) were all spotted among marchers.
Absent to the march were more below-the-line employees, including make-up artists, camera crew and other production staff.
A WB assistant explained there’s a mixed response from other below-the-lines who are out of a job. Several are frustrated with the strike because of the halt of their paycheck, while others realize it's the writer's creation that’s responsible for their position.
Adam Dasilva, a writer’s assistant for K-Ville, said that his show is filmed in New Orleans and that the locals are feeling hurt by the stop of production. The strike is not as visible in “The Big Easy” and out of state staff do not fully understand the impact of the strike. Still, Dasilva hoped there would be more below-the-lines – he’s surprised there aren’t more people out.
One writer disagreed, “I’ll get trampled like a Who concert in there!” she shouted, leery of taking her first steps to join the march.
Also “C,” “double O,” “L” worthy was this black and red Lance Armstrong-style rubber bracelet that read “United Hollywood”—Hollywood can only hope.
Photo by Craig Calkins