Actors set to add star power to the picket line


LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Hollywood actors union is officially on strike for the first time since 1980.

The Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists on Thursday joined thousands of screenwriters, who have been picketing for more than two months, to stop film and television production.

Some of SAG-AFTRA’s most famous faces have already voiced their support for the strike, including the stars of the recently released films «Barbie» and «Oppenheimer.»

A day before the unanimous national board vote to strike, «Barbie» star Margot Robbie told the film’s London premiere that she was «absolutely» ready to go on strike.

“I am very supportive of all the unions,” Robbie told Sky News on the pink carpet. «And I’m part of SAG, so I would absolutely stick with it.»

On Thursday, the cast of «Oppenheimer» also stepped out of the film’s UK premiere. Director Christopher Nolan told the audience the cast «went to write their banners» in support of the strike.

While still on the red carpet, Matt Damon had said that the cast had spoken beforehand and assisted with plans to support the strike.

«Once the strike is officially called,» they would walk, he said. «That’s why we moved this [red carpet] up, because we know the second it’s called, we’re going home.»

Emily Blunt echoed Damon’s sentiments just before the strike was announced.

“Obviously we support all the actors,” Blunt said. «And anytime it’s called, we’re going to go home and stay together, because I want everyone to get a fair deal.»

When asked about the strikes, «Oppenheimer» star Cillian Murphy told Deadline Hollywood that he supports his colleagues.

Florence Pugh said attending the «Oppenheimer» premiere was important to her as a way to recognize everyone involved in a film production.

“It’s a big deal for me to be here, and it’s also a big deal for me to be in tune with all my peers and my guild and every other guild that matters,” Pugh said. “Both can matter at the same time.”

Josh Hartnett also voiced his support for the strikes at Wednesday’s premiere.

“We are very much the face of the acting world right now here. So if it’s going to work, we have to be a part of it,” she said on the red carpet. «And I think this is a very important time in these negotiations for both the writers and the actors to lay down the ground rules for the future, because a lot of things are changing very quickly.»

Some celebrities expressed their thoughts online.

cynthia nixon took to Twitter Thursday:

“The @sagaftra strike has finally arrived. I’m proud to stand with @WGAWest and @WGAEast as the actors and writers together demand their fair share of the record-breaking profits studios have been raking in from our work for far too long.

Let’s win this! ✊🏻🔥🔥🔥✊🏻”

Jamie Lee Curtis shared several posts on Instagram in support of SAG-AFTRA.

“Looks like it’s time to take off the MASKS,” read one. «And collect The SIGNS.»

Variety and Reuters contributed.

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