Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has made a seven-figure donation to the SAG-AFTRA Foundation Relief Fund — a contribution the organization says will help support thousands of Hollywood actors currently on strike.
Johnson’s donation came after SAG-AFTRA Foundation president Courtney B. Vance and executive director Cyd Wilson sent a letter asking the union’s highest-earning actors for financial support, according to Variety.
Though the exact amount of Johnson’s seven-figure donation has not been publicly disclosed, Vance said Johnson “stepped up in a major, historic way.”
Wilson estimated the donation from Johnson, 51, is enough to provide financial aid to 7,000 to 10,000 members on strike.
“It’s the largest single donation that we’ve ever received from one individual at one time,” Wilson told Variety. “And what is amazing is that that one cheque is going to help thousands of actors keep food on their table.”
Johnson has not commented publicly on his donation.
Performers represented by the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) walked off the job on July 14 to join the already striking Writers Guild of America (WGA). The two strikes have brought most Hollywood productions to a screeching halt.
The SAG-AFTRA union represents about 160,000 Hollywood actors. The union declared its members would strike after negotiators failed to reach a deal with Hollywood’s biggest studios regarding fair pay and improved residuals for actors in today’s streaming age.
The SAG-AFTRA Foundation, a non-profit organization that collaborates with the union but is not a part, will use its Emergency Financial Assistance Program to support actors during the strike. Johnson’s donation will be added to the program.
“When we hit a crisis like this and we’re going to spend millions and millions of dollars in financial assistance, this is when we need our high profile talent who can afford it, who are in a situation to help others,” Wilson said.
She said the foundation’s financial assistance provides up to US$1,500 (nearly C$2,000) per individual member, unless there are extreme conditions or health issues, in which case a union member may qualify for up to US$6,000 (about C$7,900).
According to Forbes, Johnson was the fourth highest-paid entertainer in 2022. Though he was the highest-paid actor on the list, Johnson’s 2022 income — reportedly a whopping US$270 million (almost C$356 million) — was only surpassed by Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson, musician Bruce Springsteen and rapper Jay-Z.
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