How Gen Z Is Navigating The Hollywood Strikes

These Gen Zers Are Combating For Their Technology

— And The Future Of Hollywood

HuffPost talked to seven Gen Z writers and actors about how they’re navigating the Hollywood strikes, what the state of the business means for pursuing their craft and what comes subsequent.

Sixteen years after the landmark writers strike of 2007, leisure staff are again on the picket line. Because the final strike, new issues have arisen within the business: the specter of synthetic intelligence, smaller writers rooms, streamers erasing reveals from platforms, and a scarcity of transparency about viewership numbers impacting residuals and staff’ livelihoods.

Actors and writers unions are fiercely combating company greed, advocating for honest, livable wages and preventing for the way forward for storytelling on-screen. Screenwriters and actors be a part of staff throughout America — UPS staff, educators, animators, nurses, actuality TV stars and movie star stylists — who’re calling for a much-needed overhaul of labor on this nation. (The actors on strike are members of the Display Actors Guild-American Federation of Tv and Radio Artists, or SAG-AFTRA, whereas the writers are with Writers Guild of America. The WGA additionally represents HuffPost’s unionized staffers.)

For Gen Zers ages 18 to 26, at the moment’s labor motion takes on specific relevance. The era born between 1995 and 2010 is America’s most pro-union age group alive, based on the Middle for American Progress. That want to arrange and advocate for honest working insurance policies is probably going rooted in witnessing highly effective leaders wreck industries and fail the generations earlier than them.

Some Gen Zers have been youngsters when America navigated the Nice Recession. We bear in mind the whitelash that adopted President Barack Obama’s election, plunging Donald Trump ― now indicted 4 occasions ― into the Oval Workplace. Many people entered the workforce amid the COVID-19 epidemic and the specter of one other recession. These political and financial climates impacted how we take into consideration the way forward for work and reaching our desires.

The American Dream that we have been promised if we did the “right thing” and adopted the “right path” has been pulled from beneath us. Actually, it could by no means have been attainable for us to start with. We’re critically conscious of actuality and what lies at stake — which is the whole lot.

Gen Z leisure staff will not be simply preventing for their very own dream careers, they’re additionally preventing for futures of their industries. They’re taking a stand for the subsequent era. They’re preventing to make sure that storytelling stays a revered craft.

HuffPost talked to seven Gen Z writers and actors about how they’re navigating the Hollywood strikes, what the state of the business means for pursuing their craft and what comes subsequent.

Courtesy Thomas Chimney

Danielle Duke

Danielle Duke is a 23-year-old actor in New York Metropolis. The Cleveland, Ohio, native has been appearing for the reason that age of 6, and he or she has appeared in 4 brief movies since 2021. Duke hasn’t joined SAG-AFTRA due to the membership charges, however she helps the strike due to the union’s want to repair the residuals course of and to construct safeguards in opposition to the threats of synthetic intelligence.

Courtesy Francisco Cabrera-Feo



Francisco Cabrera-Feo is a queer Los Angeles-based screenwriter and director who was born and raised in Venezuela. At 11, Cabrera-Feo emigrated to america, settling in Broward County, Florida. A 2020 graduate of Florida State College, he has labored on collection equivalent to Netflix’s “Gentefied,” Max’s “Gordita Chronicles,” Netflix’s “Blockbuster” and others. After clawing his manner via the pandemic to jumpstart his profession, Cabrera-Feo has taken up translation jobs whereas he waits for a good contract.

Courtesy Keith Candy Sr.

Keith Candy II

Keith Candy II is a screenwriter and artistic multihyphenate hailing from Compton, California. At 23, Candy made historical past when he joined the “Star Trek: Prodigy” writers room because the youngest workers author within the historical past of the “Star Trek” franchise. Three years later, when the strike was introduced, Candy had simply bought a TV collection to Amazon. After watching his mom, a Los Angeles Unified College District worker, go on strike, he’s in survival mode ready — and preventing — for a greater future in Hollywood.

Courtesy Michael Sparks

Matthew Keith

Matthew Keith is a 24-year-old comedy author and actor in Los Angeles. Raised in Franklin, Tennessee, Keith is an alumnus of the College of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and has been drawn to the stage since adolescence. After two years of working professionally, he served as a writers’ manufacturing assistant on CBS’s “The Neighborhood,” and performed Stew in Season 5 of the collection. With these positions, he’s SAG-eligible and is working towards his probability to hitch WGA. Till Hollywood execs comply with a good deal, he’s working as a barista to remain afloat.

Courtesy Lucas Markman

Jake Lawler

Jake Lawler is a self-taught screenwriter from Charlotte, North Carolina. Lawler, 24, moved to Los Angeles in August 2020 after graduating from the College of North Carolina at Chapel Hill the place he was a NCAA Division I athlete. After working as a growth coordinator at Chaotic Good Studios, he lately earned the position of workers author on Disney+’s “The Crossover.” When he’s not writing, he does stunts for soccer commercials.

Courtesy Kristen Brown

Sofia Brown De Lopez

Sofia Brown de Lopez is a 25-year-old queer Mexican American screenwriter from Monterey, California. She graduated from Loyola Marymount College in 2019 and remained in Los Angeles to pursue her profession in storytelling. However as she was gaining momentum, threats of a recession and a possible writers strike put a halt to her Hollywood profession. In 2021, Brown de Lopez, who’s working towards becoming a member of the WGA, took a job as a authorized assistant to assist pay her payments.

David McNew through Getty Photographs

Emily Kim

Emily Kim is a 25-year-old comedian ebook creator and screenwriter. She wrote “Spider-Gwen” and the “SILK” miniseries at Marvel. Beforehand, she has labored as a workers author on tv collection equivalent to Netflix’s “XO, Kitty” and NBC’s “Quantum Leap.” Rising up with a mother or father within the business in Manhattan Seashore, California, Kim was on the picket strains through the strike of 2007-08. As a screenwriter, she briefly served as a strike captain for WGA.

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