– Bill Maher’s “Real Time” premiere postponed due to writers’ strike
– Labor dispute forces HBO to push back start date by two weeks
– Producers working to resolve issues with Writers Guild of America East (WGAE)
The season premiere of Bill Maher’s political talk show “Real Time with Bill Maher” has been postponed due to a writers’ strike. The scheduled launch on HBO for the 20th season, originally set for January 21, 2023, has now been pushed back by two weeks. The reason for this delay is the labor dispute involving the host, as the Writers Guild of America East (WGAE) has been dissatisfied with Maher’s recognition of their union since his show’s move to HBO.
The WGAE has represented the writers of the show since its debut on HBO in 2003. However, Maher, who is an executive producer of the show, pulled out the negotiating team representing the writers from the union at the end of 2021. This move came after the writers requested a renegotiation of their contract with the show’s producers, citing issues such as salary increases and healthcare benefits. Consequently, the WGAE filed a complaint against Kid Love Productions, Maher’s production company, with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).
In response to the complaint, the NLRB’s General Counsel announced that it had issued a formal charge against Kid Love Productions for refusing to bargain in good faith and for not recognizing the WGAE as its writers’ bargaining agent. The NLRB has now set a trial date on these charges for June 2023.
Meanwhile, the producers of “Real Time with Bill Maher” are actively working to resolve the issues with the WGAE. They have released a statement indicating that they remain committed to a healthy relationship with the union and are actively trying to reach an agreement. The statement also said that the writers will be back to work soon, and while the premiere’s delay is unfortunate, they hope it would “highlight the importance of resolving labor disputes, the writers’ right to collectively bargain and their access to affordable healthcare.”
Considering its long run, “Real Time with Bill Maher” has become a staple in political discourse on television. Fans are keenly awaiting the resolution of the writers’ strike so that the show can return with insightful commentary and discussions on current affairs.