“HBO Max’s new brand upsets Hollywood with ‘Creators’ section”

HBO Max was officially relaunched as Max this week, and some of the changes are already making waves. Since the streaming platform’s relaunch, new “Details” sections for movies and TV shows have awkwardly grouped writers and directors as “creators” of a particular project. The move to streamer has caused anger among entertainment creators as the Writers Guild of America (WGA) is currently on a labor strike against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), which represents studios and streamers.

For his part, Max later commented on the matter The Hollywood Reporterapologized for the issue and promised to fix it at a later date.

“Max ‘Details’ ad angers writers and creators amid WGA strike”

The detail pane now essentially just lists the writers and directors together as the “creators” for a movie or TV show. For example, in the film “Wonder Woman,” director Patty Jenkins and screenwriter Allan Heinberg are credited as the “creators” of the 2017 DC Comics superhero film. Below is another example of Martin Scorsese’s 1980 classic film Raging Bull, courtesy of Twitter user John Frankensteiner:

Another example is the 2002 film Catch Me If You Can, directed by Steven Spielberg and written by Jeff Nathanson and based on the book of the same name by Frank Abagnale Jr. and Stan Redding. Max now simply lists a large group of names. Spielberg is credited after producers Tony Romano and Walter F. Parkes. Not to mention that Spielberg was also known as the producer of the feature film.

The change in the streamer details section soon went viral and entertainers shared their outrage on social media. Steven DeKnight, writer and showrunner of Marvel and Netflix’s “Daredevil” series, wrote of the new offerings: “An absolute masterclass in breaking a streaming service.” This has been studied for years.” “Poker Face”- Writer and showrunner Nora Zuckerman also chimed in: “@WGAWest @directorsguild and @producersguild would you even remotely agree with that?”

‘Men in Black’ and ‘Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure’ writer Ed Solomon joked about Martin Scorsese being labeled a ‘content creator’ by the streamer. Of the changes, he wrote: “I would say Martin Scorsese is my favorite content creator (i.e. spend per inch), with Mean Streets & Taxi Driver being his most optimized yield out of all his products.”

THR also notes that TV shows use a similar layout in a TV series’ Episode Details pull-down menu to display the episode credits. THR reports that the pilot episode of “Succession” currently credits Regina Heyman, Frank Rich, Jesse Armstrong, Will Ferrell, Kevin Messick, Adam McKay, Dara Schnapper, and Ilene S. Landress as “creators.” The sole creator of the series has always been Jesse Armstrong.

The move comes amid the ongoing WGA strike, which is currently in its fourth week. Not to mention that the AMPTP’s current contracts with both the actors’ guild SAG-AFTRA and the directors’ guild DGA expire on June 30th. SAG-AFTRA is already ready to let its members vote for a strike This means that if enough eligible members vote ‘YES’ for a strike, the union’s executive board could call for another labor strike at any time after June 30th. Max’s move is clearly taken as a show of disrespect by many film and TV creatives. It’s not the most diplomatic move in the face of an ongoing labor strike that could see the acting and managing unions go on strike next.

After the story spread like wildfire, sparking controversy and heavy backlash, Max issued a statement to THR apologizing for the “mistake”. Max promised that the credits will be corrected at a later date. Also, the statement stated that the issue with the Details section was caused by “an oversight in the technical transition from HBO Max to Max.”

DGA President is now Lesli Linka Glatter also gave an opinion about introducing Max and placing writers, producers and directors in a generic category of “creators,” calling this “unilateral move, without notice or consultation” by Warner Bros. Discovery “a grave insult to our members and our union.”

SAG-AFTRA is expected to begin negotiations with the AMPTP on June 7th. Media outlets have not scheduled negotiations with the WGA since the strike began.

Dustin Huang

Dustin Huang is a 24ssports U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Dustin Huang joined 24ssports in 2021 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: dustinhuang@24ssports.com.

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