Thursday, November 08, 2007

'Cold Case' Writer Talks about the Strike

(Cold Case cast courtesy

Cold Case staff writer and San Antonio native Kate Purdy spoke with her former local paper via telephone about the ongoing writer's strike. In the article, she sheds some light on the issues and what she'll do if the strike lasts into the New Year. Here's one writer's story from The San Antonio Press-News (thanks to Foxfire at Look Again for the heads up):

S.A. graduate on writers' picket lines

Jeanne Jakle

Kate Purdy was thrilled to land a staff-writing job this year on a high-rated network show — CBS' "Cold Case" — only to end up months later out of work and on picket lines.

In a phone call from Hollywood on Wednesday, the Alamo Heights High School graduate, who's written or co-written three episodes for the crime drama so far, said she hopes the Writer's Guild of America strike ends as quickly as possible. That way, she can get back to her job — and needed paychecks.

For now, she's standing firm in support of the strike. In fact, she's a strike captain — in charge of organizing a group of 50 picketers each day.

"The huge impact of the Internet," Purdy said, is at the root of the strike. "We're asking for 2.5 cents on every dollar they make from revenues resulting from shows being downloaded on the Internet.

"The unfortunate thing is we can't even get the CEOs to negotiate or listen to any of our proposals. They seem to be hoping we'll cave without them having to give anything."

Purdy said a long strike promise to be tough on writers, particularly young and relatively low-salaried ones like herself. If it lasts into next year, she said she'll probably have to get a part-time job.

She thinks "Cold Case" viewers may notice a decline in quality, too. Episodes are written into January for the show, which regularly lands in the top 15 of weekly Nielsen ratings. But several haven't gone through the rewriting and editing process and won't without a writing staff onboard. "Cold Case" could be forced into reruns sometime in January.

On the flip side, news programs — such as late-night "Nightline" — may benefit from the lack of entertainment competition. With David Letterman and Jay Leno in repeats, ABC's news program is in the position of offering a live and topical alternative.

Veteran TV newsman Jim Lehrer — in San Antonio on Tuesday to help dedicate the new AT&T studio at KLRN — briefly discussed that possible consequence of the strike, saying it "would be nice" if more people turned to news shows in order to get something fresh to watch.

Danny Pino who plays Det. Scotty Valens on the hit CBS show recently told the Press-Telegram of Long Beach, CA that he is in "awe" of the show's writers. "Our writers are pretty incredible," he told the paper. "They come up with so many imaginative ways to make an investigation interesting and at the very end, to deliver the emotional impact of an untimely death and how people have had to deal with - either their loved one dying, or being a person who killed a victim and having to hold it for so many years and finally being able to give that up."

1 comment:

suekola44 said...

Great article! I hope for Katie's sake as well that this strike ends soon!