The actress turned talk show host decides to continue her show without writers
On September 10, Drew Barrymore announced on Instagram that she would be returning to host her talk show, The Drew Barrymore Show, on September 18 in accordance with WGA and SAG-AFTRA strike rules. Barrymore explained that she wanted to continue to essentially bring people together through sensitive times. She went on further by saying, “I want to be there to provide what writers do so well, which is a way to bring us together or help us make sense of the human experience.”
On May 2, the Writers Guild of America, WGA, went on strike against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, AMPTP. There are issues, including residuals over streaming shows, overworked hours, and the threat of being replaced by artificial intelligence. On July 14, The Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, SAG-AFTRA, also went on strike for similar reasons. This has resulted in many productions being shut down, including talk shows like Barrymore’s. Negotiations to end the strike have begun with the WGA, although there is no sign of an endpoint anytime soon.
How the Strikes Affect Barrymore’s Show
Despite Barrymore being part of SAG-AFTRA, the show does not violate strike rules as, according to a SAG rep, “The Drew Barrymore Show is produced under the Network Television Code, which is a separate contract and is not struck.” Barrymore went on record saying the show will not promote any work from AMPTP. Actors can appear on the show but must abide by SAG-AFTRA strike guidelines, such as the aforementioned rule of not promoting work for AMPTP. The series has already started filming its fourth season.
Many members of the WGA, including writers for Barrymore’s show, were upset hearing the news the series would resume without writers. Members from the WGA have even begun picketing outside CBS studios in New York where the show is filmed. Some members have described Barrymore’s decision as a “moral violation” in their words.
During a taping of the show, two audience members, Dominic Turczel and Cassidy Carter, were asked to leave the building because they were wearing buttons supporting the WGA strike. Carter recently spoke about this by saying, “It really had changed my perspective on her and the show in general. I’ve been completely alarmed and disheartened by this whole process”- Cassidy Carter, 2023. Cristine Kinon, a writer for Barrymore’s show, said that although she was disappointed in the news, she understood Barrymore’s decision as simply doing “what they feel is best” in her own words.
Ultimately, despite the protests, The Drew Barrymore Show will continue filming its fourth season. Still, the decision has left many fans and colleagues feeling alienated. The Drew Barrymore Show can be found on syndication or Pluto TV.
The Drew Barrymore Show (2020) Season 2 Official Trailer