'The Chase' Hit With Major Behind-the-Scenes Setback

The ABC series The Chase is in a great deal of hot water. Variety reported on Wednesday that the writers on the show have gone on strike against producer ITV America due to a contract dispute. Many of the writers on the show have since walked off the set in light of this matter.

The Chase, which features contestants competing against Jeopardy! champions James Holzhauer, Brad Rutter and Ken Jennings, premiered on Jan. 7. It wrapped up its nine-episode run on March 4. While the season has come to an end, there has been a discussion surrounding whether the writers on the show were properly compensated. The Writers Guild of America East, which represents The Chase's writers, alleged that ITV America did not abide by the terms of the collective bargaining agreement for the series. However, ITV America released a statement in which they disputed the WGA's claims.

“After the WGAE approached ITV one week ago, we began good faith negotiations and proposed a package for the writers that includes generous, over scale pay increases and health benefits through the WGA," ITV America's statement read. "Despite that proposal, the WGAE is refusing to make a deal and insisting on terms that would economically cripple the show. We remain open to continuing discussions with the guild. ITV offers top-tier health benefits to all employees, whether union or non-union.” ITV America's statement came shortly after the WGA said on Tuesday that they would be giving the production company until Wednesday (March 24) to come to an agreement on their contract terms otherwise there would be walk-offs (as previously mentioned, nine writers did walk off the set of the show on Wednesday morning).

“We have alerted Writers Guild members that ITV America is refusing to honor the choice of writers at ‘The Chase’ to be represented by the union and to receive pension and health benefits, residuals and the other basic provisions of our industrywide MBA. Guild members will stand united in not crossing the picket line at ‘The Chase,'” Lowell Peterson, the executive director of WGA East said in a statement. At the moment, it's unclear what the next step will be in this contract dispute. Even though there has been some back and forth on this topic, The Chase is still expected to return for another season on ABC.