SAG SAG

The Screen Actors Guild will mail ballots to members on May 19 to see if they will accept a two-year contract with producers.

The Guild's national board approved the contract for film and television work on April 19, a day after approving a three-year contract for commercial work. The union has been without a film and television contract since June 30, 2008, when it arrived at an impasse with producers over online and DVD residuals, among other issues.

The ballots must be returned by June 9.

The 10 months since have been marked by bitter internal strife. A dispute over whether actors should strike led to the ouster and replacement of SAG's chief negotiator and national executive director Doug Allen, who had been an outspoken proponent of the strike. Opponents feared a strike would level the film and television industries.

SAG's new agreement expiration date in 2011 is now aligned with those for the Directors Guild, Writers Guild and AFTRA, Variety reports. Deal-backers say it brings actors both stability and pay raises.

Those against the pact counter that it has no significant improvements over the previous contract, particularly regarding new media terms, and believe that rejecting it would force producers to offer SAG a better deal.

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