Writers Guild mulls pickets for Grammys

Tue Jan 15, 2008 4:22pm EST
 
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By Nellie Andreeva and Carl DiOrio

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - After steamrolling through the Golden Globes and threatening the Oscars, the Hollywood writers strike may also deflate a third marquee award show -- the Grammys.

The 50th annual Grammy Awards are scheduled to air February 10 on CBS live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

Writers Guild of America spokesman Gregg Mitchell said Monday that Grammy organizers have not asked for a special waiver to allow union writers to work on the telecast but added that such a request likely would be denied.

"The WGA has not yet taken a position on picketing the Grammys ceremony," Mitchell said.

But he noted that Grammys producer John Cossette Prods. is on the WGA's list of "struck companies."

Should the WGA decide to picket the awards show -- which conveniently takes place in Los Angeles where most writers are based -- celebrity attendance would certainly be affected. It was the refusal of Screen Actors Guild members to cross the picket line at the Globes that ultimately derailed that show.

"WGA has informed us that this is struck work, and they expect to have a picket line in place," SAG said Monday. "In those circumstances, our members have been unwilling to cross a picket line, and we anticipate that solidarity will continue."

Some of the marquee Grammy nominees -- including Justin Timberlake, Beyonce and Alicia Keys -- are SAG members. Also, the Grammy ceremony regularly attracts top movie and TV actors as presenters.

A spokeswoman for the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, which presents the Grammys, declined comment on the WGA stance, except to say that it plans to go forward with the show as planned.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

 
<p>Members of the Writers Guild of America hold signs in front of CBS Studios during the first day of a strike in Los Angeles November 5, 2007. After steamrolling through the Golden Globes and threatening the Oscars, the Hollywood writers strike may also deflate the Grammys, scheduled to air February 10 on CBS live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson</p>