Well, just when things possibly can’t get even worse.
Amidst the ongoing SAG-AFTRA and WGA strikes happening all over Hollywood, Disney currently faces even more scrutiny as actor Joey Bragg accuses the company of going through contract loopholes to avoid paying actors on their shows.
Bragg, who had starred in Disney Channel’s “Liv and Maddie,” revealed in a podcast appearance that Disney showrunners reboot several sitcoms and shows after its 3rd season to avoid paying the Disney Channel actors their minimum wage. Bragg starred in the sitcom “Liv and Maddie” from 2013 to 2017, and in its fourth and final season, the show was rebooted into “Liv and Maddie: Cali Style.”
Joey Bragg says Disney Channel didn’t have to pay 100% of minimum wage to actors in first 3 seasons of some shows
They would then reboot the series under a different name — “We were Liv & Maddie, the last season was ‘Liv & Maddie: Cali Style’”
— DiscussingFilm (@DiscussingFilm) August 3, 2023
The actor said in the Cash Cuties podcast: “They have a deal with, I don’t know if it’s the union or the AMPTP, but they had a deal where the first 3 seasons of a show, you get paid 88% of scale. So it’s 88% of like minimum wage, pretty much, for the crew, and then the idea is, you work on a show, it becomes popular, you go four, five, six seasons, and you get 100%, or whatever that is. But then, they, by the third season, even if the show’s popular, they reboot it as a brand-new show.”
After the host of the podcast reacted, Joey Bragg said that their contracts stated that they couldn’t renegotiate unless everyone decided to do so. Some popular Disney shows that had been rebooted in its final seasons were Hannah Montana -> Hannah Montana Forever and The Suite Life of Zack & Cody -> The Suite Life on Deck.
Recently, Disney’s CEO Bob Iger made headlines for stating that he did not see the strikes being done by writers and actors as “realistic”. “It’s very disturbing to me. We’ve talked about disruptive forces on this business and all the challenges we’re facing, the recovery from COVID which is ongoing, it’s not completely back. This is the worst time in the world to add to that disruption,” said Iger in a comment to CNBC.
Why can’t big companies just pay actors what they’re due? Like, they are quite literally, making them the money they earn.
It’s been more than 100 days since the Writers’ strike, and more than a month since the beginning of the Actors’ strike. Let’s all keep supporting these people in their fight for justice and proper rights.
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