Viola Davis Delays Shooting New Movie ‘G20’ Despite Receiving SAG-AFTRA Waiver: ‘Not Appropriate’ to Film During Strike

Viola Davis Delays Shooting New Movie ‘G20’ Despite Receiving SAG-AFTRA Waiver: ‘Not Appropriate’ to Film During Strike

Viola Davis won’t begin filming her new movie “G20” until the actors strike is resolved, despite receiving a SAG-AFTRA waiver that would have allowed production to take place. In a statement provided to Deadline, Davis explained why she and her partners at JuVee Productions decided to halt work on the film.

“I love this movie, but I do not feel that it would be appropriate for this production to move forward during the strike,” David said. “I appreciate that the producers on the project agree with this decision. JuVee Productions and I stand in solidarity with actors, SAG/AFTRA and the WGA.”

“G20” is a thriller that stars Davis as an American president who is forced to deal with terrorists overtaking the G20 summit. The film will be directed by Patricia Riggen and written by Noah and Logan Miller. The film is set to be distributed by Amazon Studios, but received a waiver because production is being handled by the independent studio MRC.

Davis is one of the first major actors to refuse to work on a guild-approved project during the strike. While all major studio and streaming productions are shut down, over 100 films have received “interim agreements” that allow them to continue filming. Films have to be truly independent, without any ties to the 350 producing organizations that make up the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, to be considered eligible for the waivers.

“The Strike Order extends to productions produced under the Codified Basic and Television Agreements as well as related contracts like the Low Budget Theatrical Agreement, Moderate Low Budget Project Agreement, Ultra Low Budget Project Agreement, and Special New Media Agreements. However, producers that otherwise fall within the scope of the strike order may apply for an interim agreement,” the guild wrote on its website. “Once such applications are vetted and, if approved by SAG-AFTRA, the union offers an Interim Agreement, and the producer accepts it by returning a signed copy. Once that process is complete, performers may render services on that specific production without being in violation of the strike order.” 

Notable projects that have received permission to film include the A24 films “Death of a Unicorn” starring Paul Rudd and Jenna Ortega and “Mother Mary” starring Anne Hathaway.