It's time to break out your SAG vs AFTRA Celebrity Turf War Map™ for an update, albeit a bit of a confusing one: Robert De Niro is the latest star to come out in opposition of a SAG strike, asserting during a press conference Saturday at the Karlovy Vary Film Festival that Hollywood has suffered enough bloodshed this year in the bargaining trenches to implode once more over residuals:
"I do not think it is a good time to strike now. The issues could be resolved over the next couple of years (without strike action)," De Niro said.
He contrasted calls by SAG to strike with the deal done by the DGA on the same issues, suggesting that directors had "done their homework" to get a decent deal.
"I do not think the actors have done that," he said. "I do not know if it is the right time to be doing this at all with the economy the way it is."
Nowhere is the economy worse than De Niro's vocabulary, where contractions are going for a record $140 per barrel but which powers along nevertheless on self-effacing candor and embittering agency-hopping. And while his point of view hardly seems to embrace the AFTRA contract on which members will vote this week, he isn't to be classified in the "neutral Clooneyesque pansy" category, either, thus requiring a whole new segment of the Turf War Map for "Part-Time Directors Who'd Rather Not See The DGA Contract Rendered Worthless Three Months Into its Term." We'll get to work on a redesign straightaway.