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Fran Drescher Reflects on SAG-AFTRA’s Groundbreaking Deal, Improvised Strike Speech, and the Future

In the aftermath of the SAG-AFTRA strike resolution, Fran Drescher, the president of Hollywood’s largest union, delves into the details of the groundbreaking deal, her improvised strike speech, and the union’s future endeavors.


1. AI Protections and Streaming Revenue: Drescher emphasizes the significance of the new revenue stream for members on streaming platforms (SVOD) and the crucial AI protections ensuring members won’t be duplicated without consent and compensation. The deal sets a precedent for fair compensation in the evolving landscape of the entertainment industry.

2. Fair Representation for Background Actors: Drescher expresses pride in achieving substantial representation for the lowest-paid members, particularly background actors, who secured the largest minimum increase of 11 percent. This accomplishment reflects a commitment to inclusivity and fair treatment across all roles within the industry.

3. Future Priorities: Drescher outlines future priorities, including advocating for performance capture, motion performance, and facial performance to be explicitly included in the contract. She also addresses the need to recognize and include audio description professionals in the contract, ensuring comprehensive coverage for all aspects of the industry.

4. Support from A-Listers: Drescher acknowledges the support from A-list actors like George Clooney, Ben Affleck, and Reese Witherspoon, highlighting their contributions to the SAG-AFTRA Foundation and their commitment to lift the cap on dues. The additional funds generated will be utilized to initiate independent programs benefiting members who may not qualify for certain health plans.

5. Negotiating Style: Drescher reflects on her authentic negotiating style, breaking away from traditional patterns. She believes her genuine approach, combined with a focus on female empowerment, disarmed opponents and fostered unity among the negotiating committee.

6. Post-Strike Priorities: Beyond the strike, Drescher shares plans to continue the SAG-AFTRA Green Council’s mission to promote eco-responsible entertainment. Initiatives include eliminating single-use plastic onscreen, behind the scenes, and in viewers’ homes. Additionally, she aims to restore residuals for seniors.

7. Acting and Future Aspirations: While Drescher was set to work on two films before the strike, she contemplates her future, expressing a desire to leverage her experiences for the greater good. While not considering a direct entry into politics, she remains open to possibilities, including acting and other avenues that align with her authentic sensibility.

In a candid interview, Fran Drescher provides insights into the multifaceted achievements of the SAG-AFTRA deal, underlining a commitment to a more inclusive, sustainable, and equitable future for the entertainment industry.

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