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BoJack Horseman creator Raphael Bob-Waksberg and Abbott Elementary executive producer Justin Halpern are among the eight Writers Guild of America West members just elected to its board of directors.
Incumbents Travis Donnelly, Ashley Gable, Eric Haywood and Deric A. Hughes won re-election to the board in the 2022 board election, while Bob-Waksberg, Halpern, Angelina Burnett and John Rogers were elected as additional members, the union announced on Tuesday. Seventeen WGA members were originally nominated to run in the election, for which voting took place between August 31 and Sept. 20.
In their candidacy platforms, most of the writers that won seats in Tuesday’s election said that, if elected, they would prioritize gaining more compensation — and especially more fulsome streaming residuals — from streaming platforms. Another popular theme of their platforms was ending so-called “mini-rooms,” or small writers’ rooms convened during the development process for a TV series. Mini-rooms create storylines and produce certain scripts before a series is in production and an official writers room begins, which can lead to less compensation for writers involved. Several candidates that won seats on Tuesday also voiced their opposition to “free work,” such as coming up with pitches in competitive writer situations.
Bob-Waksberg and Halpern notably said that they wanted to champion bringing more animation writers into the Writers Guild fold (currently, unionized animation writers belong either to The Animation Guild with IATSE or The Writers Guild). Burnett, who won the most votes (1,696) in the election, argued that a strike might be necessary amid negotiations for the Guild’s next minimum basic agreement to achieve certain priorities. The WGA West’s current minimum basic agreement expires in May 2023.
Overall, 2,527 members cast ballots in the election, which was administered by Votenet Solutions.
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