Reality TV star Bethenny Frankel has recently become the face of unionizing reality television. She has taken inspiration from the strikes by the WGA (Writers Guild of America) and SAG-AFTRA (Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) in the entertainment industry, which were centered around fairness in working conditions and residuals.
Even though she is no longer a cast member on “Real Housewives of New York,” Bethenny is still actively speaking out about the issues in the reality TV industry. She has managed to gather support from many former reality TV stars who are also advocating for better treatment and representation.
SAG-AFTRA has released a statement in full support of Bethenny’s mission. In the statement, they mention that they have engaged in discussions with Bethenny’s legal counsel, Bryan Freedman at Freedman + Taitelman, LLP, about the treatment of reality performers. SAG-AFTRA represents reality performers and states that they can cover these performers under their Network Code Agreement, depending on the structure of the production and the performers involved.
The statement goes on to say that SAG-AFTRA is ready to assist Bethenny, Bryan Freedman, and Mark Geragos, as well as reality performers and their members, in the fight against the exploitation of talent by studios and production companies. They encourage any reality performers or members to reach out to SAG-AFTRA’s Entertainment Contracts Department so they can work together to protect reality performers and end exploitative practices in the industry.
Bethenny has already mentioned that several other reality TV stars have reached out to her to get involved in her campaign. This could potentially lead to a wave of support and participation in the fight for better treatment and representation in reality TV.
It remains to be seen what changes will come about in the reality TV industry as a result of Bethenny’s efforts and the support of SAG-AFTRA. However, it is likely to be a significant and interesting development. It is unclear whether there will be any future Bravo boycotts, but it is clear that there is a growing movement for change in reality television.