There was a lengthy story in the LA Weekly earlier this week about the allegations of whistleblower Teri Mial, a former WGA employee, that the WGA has been routinely sitting on foreign payouts due to its writers. This is a continuation of a story that began some 18 months ago, when former WGA member William Richert filed a class action suit against the organization, alleging the WGA had engaged in a systematic practice of withholding funds due to writers and their heirs -- to the tune of tens of millions of dollars.

The WGA has since admitted that the organization does have a huge pile of undistributed cash, which the WGA's chief financial officer has since claimed is due largely to a huge influx in monies due to writers with the explosion of online publication. Other writers, though, according to the Weekly piece, allege that there is much more than the $20 million the guild acknowledges at stake. Lawsuits have bee filed, depositions taken, documents rescued from the shredder by Mial, who smuggled documents out of the Guild that she says prove the organization has been systemically denying its writers their just payments.

You can read more about the scandal in the Weekly's in-depth piece. Suffice it to say that this story, while disturbing, is not particularly surprising, is it? Writers in Hollywood have always gotten the short end of the stick from the studios on down, but it is sad that the Guild that's supposed to protect them has been stealing from them, to boot. Ouch.

via Movie City News
categories Movies, Cinematical