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Hollywood studios, writers remain in stalemate with no talks plan
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08:47, November 13, 2007

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Although the ongoing writers strike in Hollywood has forced the latest episodes of some popular TV shows to halt production, studios and their employees still have no immediate plans to return to talks, officials said Monday.

No new talks have been scheduled since thousands of Writers Guild of America members started a high-profile walkout on November 5, according to leaders of the writers union and representatives of studios and entertainment companies.

Movie and television screenwriters declared the strike, after months of negotiations failed to make progress on their demands for greater residual payments from DVDs and from new media like Internet and mobile phone downloads.

Striking writers since then have been picketing television networks and movie studios in Los Angeles and New York.

However, entertainment media reports over the weekend quoted industry insiders as saying there could be "backchannel" negotiations between the two sides.

Some late night talk shows, which are heavily dependent on writers to supply material related to current events, have gone into reruns as a result of the strike, while primetime TV drama series like ABC's "Desperate Housewives" and NBC's "The Office" also halted production.

Hollywood writers last time went on a strike in 1988, when the 22-week work stoppage cost the U.S. entertainment industry about 500 million dollars.

Source: Xinhua

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