Hanks, Newman Support Actor Strike

Thursday, September 14th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

NEW YORK (AP) — Tom Hanks, Paul Newman and other stars turned out to support striking commercial actors at rallies on both coasts as federal mediators attempted to restart talks in the 5-month-old walkout.

``Actors are the best bargain in the advertising business. We bring life to words on a printed page,'' Hanks told a crowd of about 1,000 people in Los Angeles on Wednesday.

Hanks, appearing with Alfre Woodard, David Hyde Pierce and others, called on the advertising industry to negotiate a fair contract with the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.

Representatives for the unions and advertisers met Wednesday with federal mediators in New York in an effort to resume negotiations, which broke down in July.

In New York, a rally on Sixth Avenue drew a host of stars, including Newman, Richard Dreyfuss, Susan Sarandon, Kevin Bacon, Olympia Dukakis and Billy Crudup.

Actor Treat Williams led the crowd in a chant of ``Show the commercial; show me the money!'' after telling his fellow actors that he survived being out of work for two years by doing TV commercials.

The unions, which represent 135,000 actors, have been on strike since May 1 over disputes on residual fees, money paid to commercial performers each time an advertisement airs.