Michael Ausiello, from TV Guide, received questions from viewers anxious for a Writer's Strike update... including a subject near and dear to Moonlight fan's hearts ~ if the strike ends soon, will tv shows begin airing new episodes or wait until the Fall season? He gave his comments and possible scoop in his Ask Ausiello column.
I hear that the strike is over! Is it true?— Danouk
Nothing's official, but the buzz is that a tentative agreement has been reached, with an announcement coming as early as tomorrow. But it's hard to tell what's solid intel and what's just spin. To wit: In the past 24 hours, one source close to the negotiations insisted that talk of a resolution was way premature. "There's no deal," maintained my spy. "That's just misinformation put out by the AMPTP to pressure the WGA." But moments before I put this column to bed, I heard from another very plugged-in source that the deal is done. Short story shorter: There's cause for optimism, but not celebration. Yet.
If the strike ends in the next week or so, can the current TV season be salvaged? — Donald
Depends on the network and the show. A source at one of the Big 4 tells me that should the strike end by mid-February, one best-case scenario being bandied about has established series going back into production and working through June, making more episodes for this season and some for next. Then they'll take a summer break before starting regular production on next season. The reason for this is twofold: They don't want to bail out on this season, but they also don't want to go to the expense of putting shows back into production for just two or three episodes. One industry observer describes this as "a smart plan," while acknowledging that there's another variable in all this: the actors. "The trouble is, a lot of actors schedule hiatus movies, or just elaborate vacations. And if they ask them to work through certain dates, that could trigger some contract issues." Now, continue reading for the worst-case scenario….
G'day, fellow Snapple lover! Pushing Daisies is my absolute favorite new show. Any scoop/news? — The Doctor
I posed Donald's strike-aftermath Q to Daisies creator Bryan Fuller, and here's his sobering response. " Even if the strike ends in the next week or two, it looks like they will scuttle the rest of the season. This is for many reasons. One is that it will be hard to launch a big promotional campaign for four or five episodes; it's just not cost-effective. Two is that if we did come back we would land right in the path of the American Idol juggernaut, and would likely be decimated. Three is if we came back in the fall with a full slate of episodes, then ABC could relaunch the show in a big way. The tentative plan now is to start the writers immediately [after the strike is resolved] so we can get some scripts stockpiled, and then hit production in June. But that's all tentative. We've talked about so many options since the strike began and they fluctuate on a weekly basis. But right now a short first season seems the most likely."