This afternoon, the IATSE and Reveille Productions announced an agreement to unionize the reality show The Biggest Loser. This agreement will bring the largest remaining non-IA reality show under the seamless cloak of IATSE contractual benefits and protections.
Production on the hit NBC show shut down temporarily Monday, Nov. 8, after members of the production crew voted to support the IA. Intensive talks took place during the week and over the weekend and the new agreement was ratified by the crew in a meeting this morning. As previously reported, AFTRA and DGA already have agreements with the production.
Crew and members of other IA locals have been picketing at the Calabasas location of the show since Tuesday, although production continued during the picketing.
Mike Miller, Vice President of the IA and Director of its Motion Picture and Television Division said, “This agreement is a positive step forward for the crew of The Biggest Loser, especially in the area of health benefits. We are pleased to see them go back to work.” Lee Rierson, Managing Director and Head of Business and Operations for Reveille said, “We have reached a fair agreement with the IA while managing to avoid significant disruption to the production, and are happy to see our entire crew working together again.”
This was a relatively short but intense walkout, brought about by workers who had the courage to vote with their feet in opposition to working conditions at one of the most profitable reality series that had obstinately refused to provide benefits to its below-the-line crew. Congratulations to everyone -- on both sides of the table -- who made it possible.