hollywood writers strike
Hollywood writers strikeAshley Landis/AP
  • Hollywood writers and actors have been on strike for over four months. 
  • The impact on California's economy has been enormous – reaching almost $5 billion. 
  • Caterers, dry cleaners, drivers, and other small enterprises are among those most affected, says one researcher.

Hollywood's first double strike in over 60 years has dealt a $5 billion blow to California's economy. 

The entertainment industry has been largely on pause since the Writers Guild of America and the actors' union SAG-AFTRA joined the picket line together. 

Now, the consequences are reverberating across Los Angeles, as the slowdown creates a knock-on effect for enterprises across the board.

Caterers, dry cleaners, truckers, car rental companies and other small businesses that support the moviemaking industry all bear the brunt of the walkout, according to Kevin Klowden, chief global strategist at the Milken Institute, which conducted the research.

"All these different people who provide support services that make productions happen – they're getting nailed," Klowden told the Financial Times

"We looked at it and we talked to people – and it was affecting restaurants and catering companies, affecting trucking companies, it was affecting welders, it was affecting construction people, it was affecting dry cleaners, it was affecting all sorts of businesses," he told Yahoo Finance last month. 

The eye-watering sum even outstripped analysts' expectations of the damage. Todd Holmes, an entertainment industry professor at Cal State Northridge, had predicted a $3 billion blow to California's economy in the first 100 days of the strike.

The two unions have downed tools simultaneously for the first time since 1960 over the lack of income they're receiving from streaming platforms, and their concerns about the disruptive impact that AI could have on their profession.

As a result, Hollywood studios have begun delaying new releases, as strike rules prohibit actors from promoting their films. Dune: Part Two, Ghostbusters: Afterlife, and Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse have all either been postponed or removed from the release calendar.

Read the original article on Business Insider