This piece was written during the 2023 WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes. Without the labor of the writers and actors currently on strike, Challengers being covered here wouldn’t exist. We stand with the WGA and SAG-AFTRA.
Challengers, the film starring Zendaya and directed by Luca Guadagnino, was set to take over the opening night at the Venice Film Festival but the studios’ refusal to pay their actors and writers fairly has caused initial plans to fall through the cracks. Do you want to know more? Keep reading!
Here we go!
According to Variety, the reason for the withdrawal of Challengers, which was called to be the headliner of the Venice Film Festival, is the impossibility of promotion. SAG-AFTRA prohibits its members from promoting any shows or movies during the strike.
This means that Zendaya and the rest of the cast would not have been able to launch the film on the August 30 red carpet in Venice. And, as always, the studio looks out for their interest, and considering the number of young fans that Zendaya has and that she can drag to see Challengers, they decided that it was best to withdraw from the Venice Film Festival.
Yet even as the consequences of not paying the writers and actors who make their movies/tv shows possibly fairly are already hitting their pockets, studios are still reluctant to give them their fair pay. So we will continue to wait to enjoy Challengers until they decide to do what is fair.
For now, the new release date for Challengers is set for April 26, 2024. This gives us an indication that the strike won’t be over anytime soon and that the studios plan to remain part of the problem rather than acknowledging that without the writers and actors, they wouldn’t have movies or shows to distribute. And that must be remunerated fairly.