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SAG OKs Cable Toon Deal

SAG's national board has unanimously ratified its new contract for basic cable animation, reports the trades. The contract, which went into effect with Friday's approval, is retroactive to Jan. 1, 2006, and will run through June 30, 2008.

The new deal nets a 20% increase in residuals after 16 years under an original pact with such companies as Walt Disney Pictures & Television, Warner Bros. Animation and Cartoon Network Studios.

"This is a significant and well-deserved victory for the many actors who work under this contract, specifically day performers," SAG president Alan Rosenberg said. "I'm proud of the work done by our negotiating committee and staff, who were able to improve this contract for the first time in two decades. This demonstrates that producers and performers can work together to achieve results that benefit both sides and keep our industry moving forward."

Sallie Weaver, who is retiring May 1, served as chief negotiator, and Loren Lester was chair of the negotiating committee.

With the new contract, the residual rate for voice performers will rise from 12% to 17% of their minimum pay $716 for a four-hour session for the first rerun. For each subsequent rerun, the actors are paid a decreasing rate that bottoms out at 1.5% of minimum for the 13th and all subsequent runs. The 20% increase is figured because cable animated series have an average of 25 repeats after the initial run.

The tentative agreement between SAG and the production companies was announced March 28. It was the first contract negotiated under Rosenberg's administration, which was elected last year on a platform of getting more aggressive in negotiations.

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