‘The Penguin’ Production Shuts Down Due to Writers Strike!!

The ongoing WGA strike has rightfully shut down many high-profile productions over the last number of weeks. While series like House of the Dragon and Welcome to Derry look to push through the strike, the Writers Guild of America has successfully urged Warner Brothers Discovery’s DC series The Penguin to pause production until the writers can get a fair deal. The sequel series to last year’s smash theatrical hit The Batman is set to see the return of Colin Farrell’s interpretation of the iconic comic villain and was deep into production before picketers shut it down on Tuesday.

Penguin was set to film in Westchester, New York today, but the WGA East arrived early and in full force, according to Deadline. As with many other productions in the past week, including Netflix heavyweight Stranger Things, Teamsters and local guilds are refusing to cross the picket line. This is not a good look for Warner Bros and new CEO David Zaslav who are trying to restore the DC brand to its former glory. Zaslav has been in the news a lot in the past year for abruptly canceling several highly anticipated projects like Batgirl and the revelation that Zaslav made nearly $40 million in compensation last year on top of his astronomical salary. Again, not a good look, especially when their newly branded Max streaming service is launching next week on May 23. One of the high-profile shows they promoted in their presentation for the rebranding service was Penguin. Now, because billion-dollar studios don’t want to pay their writers — many of whom can’t even afford their own rent — a fair living wage, shows like Penguin are under fire. You can’t have a streaming service without content after all.

Why the Writers Strike is Not Going Away

In these frankly scary times, writing as a career is being threatened. The rise of AI has been particularly disconcerting. Writers want protection against AI, protection from “free work,” protection for writers rooms, and the elimination of mini rooms. By and large, studios are trying to turn writing as an art form into a permanent freelance gig which the WGA is actively fighting against. You can’t have your favorite TV show or film without the writers. It all starts with them. The Batman was one of the best-written pieces of art to come out of last year, and it’s a shame that the studios continue to undervalue the incredible work screenwriters do on a daily basis. In the world of film, they’re real-life superheroes and the studios are quickly becoming supervillains that must be stopped.

When Does Penguin Release?

The Penguin is set to release on Max sometime in 2024. If Warner Bros wants to make that release window, it looks like they should pay their writers what they deserve before they start looking like Penguin themselves hanging out at the rundown Iceberg Lounge.


via Collider

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