Studios Start Playing Hardball With Strikers

20th Century Fox and CBS Paramount have sent breach-of-contract letters to the show runners who have stopped performing their production duties once they went on strike with other television writers, according to The New York Times.

The move is an escalation of hardball tactics by the studios. This week, the studios said they expected that the show runners — the writer-producers who oversee some of the biggest hits on television — would continue to work on the shows by performing nonwriting duties.

But after many of the industry’s top show runners said publicly that they did not intend to do any work as long as the strike by members of the Writers Guild of America continued, the studios began notifying the writer-producers that they would no longer be paid as producers if they failed to show up at work.