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Drew Barrymore has halted production on her US talk show following a furious backlash against her decision to press ahead with it despite a strike by actors and writers.

In a statement shared on Instagram on Sunday, Barrymore wrote she had “listened to everyone” and would now pause the show’s premiere until the industrial action was over.

It comes a day after the actress and presenter posted a teary video to Instagram in which she “accepted responsibility” for the row – while also claiming that “I know there’s just nothing I can do that will make this OK”. The clip now appears to have been deleted.

The fourth series of The Drew Barrymore Show had been due to debut on CBS on Monday 18 September, but without the contribution of striking writers.

Union SAG-AFTRA had said the 48-year-old’s role as a host on the programme technically did “not violate the current strike rules,” but critics said the move undermined the walkouts and demonstrated a lack of solidarity with her colleagues in the industry.

Barrymore was also accused of being a “scab” and was dropped as host of November’s National Book Awards in the US after she first announced her determination to go ahead with the show earlier this month.

In her statement announcing her initial decision, she said she was “making the choice to come back for the first time in this strike for our show, that may have my name on it but this is bigger than just me”.

She added: “I own this choice.”

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In her fresh statement on Sunday, Barrymore said: “I have no words to express my deepest apologies to anyone I have hurt and, of course, to our incredible team who works on the show and has made it what it is today.

“We really tried to find our way forward. And I truly hope for a resolution for the entire industry very soon.”

US writers in the film and TV industry launched strike action in May – before they were joined by actors and performers in July – in the biggest industrial action to hit the industry for more than 60 years.

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The dispute, centred around pay, concerns over the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and the treatment of workers by streaming platforms, shows little sign of being resolved soon – and has forced many shows off air.

Upcoming film releases and industry events are also likely to be affected unless an agreement with studio bosses is reached soon.

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Hollywood writers reach ‘tentative’ deal to end strike over AI and compensation

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Hollywood writers reach 'tentative' deal to end strike over AI and compensation

A “tentative” deal has been reached to end a long-running strike by writers in Hollywood.

A statement from the WGA (Writers Guild of America) said: “We have reached a tentative agreement on a new 2023 MBA, which is to say an agreement in principle on all deal points, subject to drafting final contract language.

“We can say, with great pride, that this deal is exceptional-with meaningful gains and protections for writers in every sector of the membership.”

The three-year contract agreement – settled on after five days of renewed talks by negotiators WGA and the AMPTP – must be approved by the guild’s board and members before the strike officially ends.

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The terms of the deal were not immediately announced.

The statement added: “To be clear, no one is to return to work until specifically authorized to by the Guild.

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“We are still on strike until then. But we are, as of today, suspending WGA picketing. Instead, if you are able, we encourage you to join the SAG-AFTRA picket lines this week.”

The agreement comes just five days before the strike would have become the longest in the guild’s history, and the longest Hollywood strike in decades.

About 11,500 members of the Writers Guild of America walked off the job on 2 May over issues of pay, the size of writing staffs on shows and the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the creation of scripts.

SAG-AFTRA actors during their ongoing strike, in Los Angeles (file pic)
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SAG-AFTRA actors during their ongoing strike, in Los Angeles (file pic)

In July, the SAG-AFTRA actors’ union started its own walkout which is yet to be resolved.

It said in a statement: “SAG-AFTRA congratulates the WGA on reaching a tentative agreement with the AMPTP after 146 days of incredible strength, resiliency and solidarity on the picket lines.

While we look forward to reviewing the WGA and AMPTP’s tentative agreement, we remain committed to achieving the necessary terms for our members.

“We remain on strike in our TV/Theatrical contract and continue to urge the studio and streamer CEOs and the AMPTP to return to the table and make the fair deal that our members deserve and demand.”

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Toddler and two adults shot dead in Jacksonville during row over dog sale, police say

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Toddler and two adults shot dead in Jacksonville during row over dog sale, police say

A three-year-old child and two adults were fatally shot during an argument over an apparent dog sale in Florida, according to police.

Five people – including the toddler – had gone to a luxury apartment complex at around 10pm on Saturday to meet with some people about the sale of a dog, said Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office Assistant Chief JD Stronko.

Gunfire broke out during an argument, with three victims were fatally hit and a third adult wounded.

Two men fled in a car, witnesses told police.

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Mr Stronko said the two adults killed and the one wounded were all in their 20s. Their names have not yet been released.

No further details were given about the condition of the wounded victim.

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Migrant surge at US border pushes Texas city to ‘breaking point’

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Migrant surge at US border pushes Texas city to 'breaking point'

A sharp rise in migrants crossing the US border from Mexico has pushed a Texas city to “breaking point”, its mayor has warned.

With more than 2,000 people a day seeking asylum, services in El Paso have been overwhelmed, leaving the authorities struggling to cope.

The influx has also hit the Texas border city of Eagle Pass, where more than 8,000 migrants arrived this week, leading authorities to declare an emergency.

Pic: AP
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There has been a surge in arrivals at the US border. Pic: AP

After a dip in illegal crossings following new asylum restrictions in May, the large number of recent arrivals has sparked a fresh wave of political attacks on US President Joe Biden ahead of the 2024 election.

It comes as Britain’s Home Secretary Suella Braverman questioned whether international migration rules designed more than a century ago are “fit for purpose ahead of a major speech in the US.

The UK has been dealling with its own migrant issues, with people crossing in small boats from France, while southern Italy has also seen arrivals from North Africa.

While just six weeks ago, about 350 to 400 people were crossing into El Paso per day, this has recently surged to 2,000 or more.

Mayor Oscar Leeser told a news conference: “The city of El Paso only has so many resources and we have come to… a breaking point right now.”

He has chartered buses to take migrants to New York, Chicago and Denver.

Republican governors in Texas and Florida have been criticised for sending migrants to cities seen as liberal, such as New York and Sacramento.

But Mr Leeser, a Democrat, said all of the migrants on the El Paso buses were going voluntarily to the cities of their choice.

He said: “I think it’s really important to note that we have a broken immigration system.

“It’s the same thing over and over again.”

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In August, border patrol officers made 181,509 arrests on the Mexican frontier, up 37% from July, according to latest figures.

People in families with children fuelled the increase, with 93,999 arrests – the highest on record – up from 60,454 in July and 31,487 in June.

Troy Miller, acting US Customs and Border Protection chief, said: “Our operational tempo along the border has increased in response to increased encounters, and we remain squarely focused on our broader security mission and enforcing US immigration laws.”

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