The ScreenActors Guild (SAG) has taken the unprecedented step of recovering residualsowed by so-called "problem producers" to union members by selling rights toseven films at a public foreclosure auction.
As part of SAG'scollective bargaining agreements, producers frequently guarantee payments toperformers and use the film rights as a form of collateral.
In thisinstance, the union said the producers defaulted on their residual payments,which amounted to more than $400,000 for the seven films.
The sale of BloodMoney (1996), Delivered (1998), The Linguini Incident (1991), Skeletons (1996), Telling Lies In America (1997), Traveller (1997), and Under Heaven (1998) took place on Jul 13 at SAG's LosAngeles headquarters.
The union said one of the titles sold for five figures,and the remaining six will be sold privately through a sales agent. SAG expectsto announce a total sales figure for the seven titles in early 2005 once theprocess is complete.
"Recouping lostwages through foreclosure will be an ongoing course of action for Screen ActorsGuild," SAG deputy assistant general counsel Duncan Crabtree-Ireland said in astatement.
"It'sunacceptable that each year many producers fail to make proper payments ofmillions of dollars of wages owed to SAG-represented performers.
'Producers who do nottake their contractual responsibilities seriously must understand that this wasnot a one-time event. We will protect our members from problem producers whohave a track record of not paying our members for their work.'