Peabody Awards Ceremony Canceled Amid ‘Uncertain and Meaningful Challenges That Exist Industrywide’

In what appears to be another effect of the ongoing strike by members of the Writers Guild of America, the 2023 Peabody Awards ceremony has been canceled.

In a statement Monday afternoon, the Peabody Awards organization said the cancellation comes as a result of “ongoing uncertainty and meaningful challenges that exist industrywide.” The group also acknowledged “the position” many 2023 nominees “find themselves in,” though it didn’t actually refer directly to the strike itself.

“As an organization dedicated to honoring the most compelling and empowering stories in broadcasting and streaming media, we recognize and respect the position that many of this year’s Peabody Award winners find themselves in. Due to the ongoing uncertainty and meaningful challenges that exist industrywide, we have decided to cancel the 83rd annual Peabody Awards ceremony that was set to take place on June 11 in Los Angeles. Canceling the ceremony is extremely disappointing as this year’s 39 winners are immensely talented and have brought forth powerful stories that deserve to be celebrated,” the organization said.

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It’s only the latest major industry event to be impacted. Just over a week ago, the live ceremony for the 2023 MTV Movies &TV Awards was canceled after host Drew Barrymore dropped out to support the strike. MTV replaced it with a clip show that included pre-taped segments. Last week the Critics Choice Association postponed a planned celebration of LGBTQ+ movies and television that it had planned to hold in early summer. And that’s in addition to the myriad television shows and movie shoots that have paused production.

The WGA strike, which began May 2, is happening during the start of what is normally the television industry’s lead up to the Emmy Awards. How (or if) that ceremony will be affected remains to be seen. For now, it’s still scheduled to air Sept. 18. That may indeed be a safe bet on the Television Academy’s part. The 2007-2008 strike lasted for just over three months (Nov. 5 to Feb. 12), and the 2023 Emmys ceremony is still four months away.

One complicating factor is that both the Director’s Guild of America (DGA) and the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) have contracts with the studios that expire June 30. DGA began formal negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) on May 10, while SAG-AFTRA enters into talks on June 7.

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There’s no way to know if these two powerful guilds will join WGA in striking, but both groups have made displays of solidarity with striking writers. SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher marched with writers earlier this month, and Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, the guild’s national executive director, said last week that “actors are facing the same problem” writers are striking over.

And on May 3, the second day of the strike, members of DGA and SAG-AFTRA joined members of IATSE and two other industry unions at a massive event showing solidarity with writers.

For all of TheWrap’s WGA Strike coverage, click here.

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