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This Day In Market History: Writer Strike Cripples Hollywood

Elizabeth Balboa

Each day, Benzinga takes a look back at a notable market-related moment that occurred on this date.

What Happened

On Nov. 5, 2007, the Writers Guild of America brought Hollywood to a halt with a strike that would last months.

Where The Market Was

The S&P 500 closed at 1,502.17, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 13,543.40.

What Else Was Going On In The World

The same day, Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ: GOOGL) (NASDAQ: GOOG) introduced its Android operating system, which wouldn’t be available for another year. “American Gangster” and “Bee Movie” led the box office.

Writers Ink Hollywood Tragedy 

Until Feb. 12, 2008, the labor organizations representing film, TV and radio writers protested unfavorable terms with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. Writers were demanding a larger share of DVD and streaming revenues.

During the strike, production on more than 60 shows shut down, with late-night talk shows rolling into reruns and primetime comedies and dramas burning through their backlog of fresh episodes.

The strike disrupted the likes of CBS Corporation (NYSE: CBS), Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ: CMCSA)’s NBC Universal, Walt Disney Co (NYSE: DIS), Viacom, Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAB)’s Paramount Pictures, Sony Corp (NYSE: SNE), MGM, Warner Bros — now owned by AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) — and News Corp (NASDAQ: NWSA).

Leaders of the WGA and AMPTP tentatively settled Feb. 12 and officially approved a new, three-year contract Feb. 26 — nearly four months after the strike began. The writers returned to work, leaving Los Angeles to clean up a $3-billion economic loss.

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Photo by Mateusz Kudla/Wikimedia. 


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