LOS ANGELES (AP) -- The actors say they aren't putting on a show.
The first major Hollywood strike since writers walked out in 1988 was set to begin today with union actors planning rallies in Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco and Chicago.
The actors said they refuse to perform in radio and television commercials until they get a larger chunk of the booming cable TV business.
In Los Angeles, actors planned to march to the Wilshire Boulevard offices of several ad agencies, Screen Actors Guild spokesman Greg Krizman said.
SAG and the American Federation of Television & Radio Artists, representing about 135,000 actors, authorized the walkout last month.
At issue is the current pay structure for network and cable commercials. Associations representing advertisers want to scrap a decades-old system that pays actors extra money each time a commercial airs on network TV.
In its place would be a flat-rate system similar to the existing one for cable commercials. Advertisers say an increase in flat-rate pay for cable ads would more than offset money actors would lose from the ''pay-per-play'' system for network commercials.
The unions want to expand the pay-per-play method to include cable ads. They contend that the boom in cable channels has allowed advertisers to make more money by better targeting audiences on special-interest channels.
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