Lord of the Rings star Sean Astin puts big streamers on blast yet again in another stirring speech regarding the SAG-AFTRA strikes.
The popular actor has been a voice for the voiceless on the picket lines and his recent speech putting big streamers to boot is a must-watch for those keeping up with the ongoing SAG-AFTRA and WGA strikes.
Sean Astin puts big streamers on blast in stirring speech
The Award-winning, fan favorite actor Sean Astin has been a member of the SAG-AFTRA negotiating committee for the recent strikes and intense contract dispute against big streamers and production studios.
In a stirring speech to an increasingly frustrated audience of his co-workers and representatives, shared by BreakThrough News, Astin took no prisoners and put big streamers on blast stating that “There is no reason that we shouldn’t participate in the success” of the products they help create, adding “We have no choice but to win!”.
“They’re paying us late! At Universal, and Warner Bros, and Disney, and Amazon, and Hulu, and Netflix: Are you kidding me?! We have gone decades without certain basic fundamental things being addressed in our contracts.”
Astin referred back to the investment in new technology that has seen the film industry generate hundreds of billions of dollars over the past few decades, noting that this is not the first time that big streamers have used technological advancements to stifle contract growth:
“Every time some new technology comes in, the producers take a position with us that: ‘We really need to build this VHS business. We’re not sure what’s going to happen with DVD’s.’ Well, guess what. The streaming business is [already] built, and they are making a ton of money, and there is no reason that we shouldn’t participate in that success.”
An inspiring public speaker and with emotion starting to blend into his voice, Sean Astin took a moment to reflect on the power that SAG-AFTRA wields: “I love what I do, you love what you do, we all love what we do. Do you know who else loves what we do? The audience, the audience loves what we do.”
“You know who else loves what we do? The executives. They’re in their offices, they’re watching it. They’re watching it on their private jets. They watch us. They love us. They don’t have anything if they don’t have us. And we deserve, we’re entitled to, we should be paid in success.”
The Lord of the Rings and Stranger Things star would reaffirm the argument of wider SAG-AFTRA members that “We should have some continuing financial participation in the products we create” and that “We have no choice but to win.”
At the center of the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes, as well as the online conversation surrounding the situation, is the implementation of AI technology within the film and TV industry, something that Sean Astin has already delivered powerful speeches about.
Speaking to TMZ in July, Astin had explained the dangers of big streamers not considering artificial intelligence proposals seriously, even going as far as to say that they offered SAG-AFTRA “bupkis” – that is to say, nothing at all.
“We [were] proud of it: Our AI proposals that we sent over was a product of great effort on behalf of experts that are volunteers, our members. We are all struggling to figure out how we’re going to deal with this new technology, and we pushed it across in good faith and they came back with bupkis. They did not want to seriously talk about the fact that AI-generated characters and performances can displace actors, and stunt people, and background [actors].”