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Saturday, January 12, 2008

WGA Members Start Drafting Own Destinies

The LA Times takes another look at Writer's Guild members starting new ventures to take control of their own destinies. From Joseph Menn's story:

    At least three start-ups, each with a different business approach, are unveiling their corporate monikers and the names of their founders as they intensify the search for venture capital and top management. With names such as Hollywood Disrupted and Virtual Artists Inc., these new ventures have lured investors such as the Oscar-winning writer of "Rain Man" and the Emmy-winning scribe behind "Homicide," along with prominent software developers and technology executives.

    These new ventures are incubating in the fiery glow of the 2-month-old strike by the Writers Guild of America. ...

    Some writers are now taking matters into their own hands, using their downtime to meet with venture backers, other writers and technologists.

    "We should show the studios some gratitude for getting us together," said "Rain Man" coauthor Ron Bass, a member of the WGA's negotiating committee and an investor and director of Virtual Artists. "This is not just an Internet play, but the beginning of what the future is going to look like."

    About 20 entertainment and software writers are investing an average of $10,000 for a chunk of Virtual Artists. ....

Here's the earlier LA Times story, also by Menn.

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