13 April 2014 4:22 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

SAG-AFTRA will begin negotiations on a master contract covering movie and primetime TV with the Hollywood production companies on May 5 — less than two months before the current SAG and AFTRA deals expire June 30.

The performers union, which has 165,000 members, made the announcement Sunday following a two-day meeting of its national board. It did not disclose any details of the proposal but the negotiations will likely cover complex issues such as the whether to create a new master contract or continue with the current SAG and AFTRA deals, along with the fate of the separate SAG and AFTRA pension and health plans.

SAG-AFTRA President Ken Howard (pictured above) will chair the negotiating committee. National Executive Director David White — who had been the front-runner earlier this year for a similar post for the National Basketball Players Assn. — is the union’s chief negotiator.

White’s status as the SAG-AFTRA »

- Dave McNary

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