‘Barry’ alum Stephen Root explains why actors are ready to strike

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Hollywood actors and studios are trying to come to a deal in order to avoid a strike — last week they extended talks until July 12. So what’s going to happen? Stephen Root, star of Barry and the upcoming Freeform animated comedy Praise Petey, and he tells ABC Audio he and others aren’t really sure.

“I think there was a better possibility of us walking had we not extended the, the time to July 12. I think that gives us a better time to see both sides and for them to negotiate a little more, but I think there’s still just as much a chance to strike as not,” he says.

One of the main things Root is fighting for is restructuring residuals, or payments actors and others get when a show is in reruns or on a streaming service.

“We started out Barry as an HBO show and had two years of regular residuals. And then it was thrown on to HBO Max, without, you know, anybody consulting us. And so our residuals went from here to here,” he explains.

“I’m fighting for the younger people … because when I got in it, you lived on residuals … And that doesn’t happen anymore because the networks are owning their own streaming services, throwing them onto there,” he continues. “It’s good for them. It’s not good for the actors and … for young actors learning how to do these roles.”

Adds Root, “I was able to do … Civil Wars and NYPD and a couple of other things … I felt like I could pay the rent for a couple of months. Then I did … Harts of the West … that I felt like, okay, I got enough in the bank to keep auditioning and trying for better things.”

Praise Petey premieres July 21 on Freeform.

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