Here’s when your favorite show may return now that the writers strike is ending

Picketers carry signs outside Amazon Studios in Culver City, Calif., on Monday, July 17, 2023. (AP)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The writers strike is officially over as of midnight Wednesday. So when will your favorite shows return?

Well, it’s complicated.

Screenwriters can return to work for the first time since they walked out on May 2, but 65,000 screen actors remain on strike, with no negotiations on the horizon. (Technically, the 11,500 member Writers Guild of America must still ratify their deal with studios, but that seems inevitable.)

The actors strike stoppage will prevent many projects from returning to normal. Certain paused productions such as “Deadpool 3,” “Yellowjackets” and the next film from Quentin Tarantino will still have to wait on actors to reach a deal with studios.


Late-night talk shows were the first to be affected when the strike began, and they may be among the first to return to air now. NBC’s “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” and “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” on CBS could come back within days.

They will return with a guest shortage, however. The actors strike limits promotional appearances that are the lifeblood of late-night shows.

“Saturday Night Live” might be able to return for its 49th season. Its writers could be at work soon on sketches, and its actors could perform because they work under a different contract not covered by the actors strike, though as union members they may be reluctant to do so.

Shows that return while actors are still picketing could prove controversial, as happened with the planned resumptions of daytime shows including “The Drew Barrymore Show” and “The Talk.” Those plans were later abandoned.

One show that’s likely to make a speedy return is “Real Time with Bill Maher.” The host plotted a return without writers but ended up postponing once last week’s negotiations were set.


Writers rooms for scripted shows that shut down at the strike’s onset, including Netflix’s “Stranger Things,” “Severance” on Apple TV+ and “Abbott Elementary” on ABC are also likely to reactivate quickly. But with no performers to act out the scripts, long delays between page and screen will be inevitable.

Film writers will also get back to work on their slower timeline, though those working on scripts or late revisions for already scheduled movies — including “Deadpool 3” and “Superman: Legacy” — will certainly be hustling to avoid further release-date delays.

Director Quentin Tarantino’s 10th film, “The Movie Critic,” is among the scripts that are written whose makers are awaiting actors’ return to sets.


Barrymore’s planned return to her daytime television show became a rallying point for picketers earlier this month, prompting her to cancel her plans. “The Talk” and “The Jennifer Hudson Show,” which also employ some screenwriters, also called off plans to return.

Barrymore and the other shows have not announced their return dates.


Absolutely. Networks had to get creative with fall programming by tapping into international shows, game shows and more sports. But there are still several new series and movies coming out this year.

Some standout newcomers include a “Walking Dead” show focused on fan favorite Daryl Dixon and a “John Wick” prequel series that are airing now. Still to premiere are a new Jesse L. Martin NBC series, “Irrational,” and a “Frasier” sequel.

The PBS lineup is largely unaffected. It includes a Ken Burns documentary series, “The American Buffalo,” and a drama show about the lives of people fighting World War II airing. The network also has nonfiction shows that examine Elon Musk’s Twitter takeover, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the Houston Astros cheating scandal, as well as how animals are adapting to human-caused habitat changes.

Movie theaters will have a mix of Oscar contenders and action films. Martin Scorsese’s “Killers of the Flower Moon,” starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert DeNiro and Lily Gladstone, will be out in October. November brings the newest Marvel film, “The Marvels,” as well as the prequel “The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes.”