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Quest Means Business
PGA Tour And Saudi-Backed LIV to Form Partnership; Dam Collapse in Kherson Region Forces Evacuations; Union Leader Today's Protest One of the Last; Prince Harry Testifies Against Mirror Group; U.S. Actors Seek Deal Over AI "Digital Doubles". Aired 3-4p ET
Aired June 06, 2023 - 15:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ZAIN ASHER, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: The Dow is slightly lower, basically pretty much flat right now, down about 30 points or so, certainly taking a
breather after its recent rally. Those are the markets and these are the main events.
A stunning merger between bitter rivals. LIV Golf and PGA agreed to a partnership.
Thousands of Ukrainians are forced to evacuate after a critical dam collapses. Kyiv and Moscow are blaming each other.
And strikes in France of disrupting activity on the ground and the sky. We here from airline CEOs about the consequences.
Coming to you live from New York, it is Tuesday, June 6th. I'm Zain Asher, in for my colleague, Richard Quest, and this is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.
Tonight, we begin with a stunning truce in the world of professional golf, ending a bitter rift between competing tours. The PGA is set to form a
partnership with the Saudi-backed LIV Golf League, as well as the European Tour. It is a seismic move that unites the sport under one banner, and
resolves a legal dispute in which LIV accused the PGA of anti-trust violations.
It is hard to overstate just how ugly the spat had gotten. Some of golf's top stars had become bigger rivals off the course trading barbs and
recommendations about what was best for the sport.
Now that the fighting is suddenly over, everyone is waiting to see how the dust will settle.
So let's bring in CNN's World Sport, Don Riddell right now.
So, Don, you've been covering the story since it broke early this morning. I know we're still getting the facts right now, but just based on what
we're seeing, how much of a victory is this for the Kingdom, for the Saudi Kingdom, especially in terms of their global sports ambition?
DON RIDDELL, CNN WORLD SPORT HOST: Well, you're right, Zain. There is still a lot we don't know, and arguably the most important players in all of
this, the players themselves, they don't really know.
They were taken by as much surprise as the fans and the journalists who cover the game were this morning. The PGA Tour Commissioner, Jay Monahan,
is going to be meeting with the golfers in one hour, and I suspect he is going to be receiving some very, very pointed questions from them.
It is hard to see if we're going to talk about winners and losers. It is hard to see how the Saudi government are anything but winners in all of
this, this is what they wanted all along. They would have wanted a year ago to form some sort of collaboration with the established legacy tours. And
of course, it didn't go that way. It went very, very ugly. It became very, very bitter.
There were lawsuits flying left and right, and now, they've all ended up on the same side. I think the winners might also be the players who defected,
the rebel players who went and joined the LIV Tour and were paid tens, if not hundreds of millions of dollars for doing so.
They were expelled from their tours, and now, at the end of the season, they're going about to find a way back on to them. So I guess then they
must be thinking right now, we've had the last laugh because they were roundly criticized for doing so.
But to understand just how seismic this news is, just how much of a U-turn this has been for the PGA Tour, I think we should look at what Jay Monahan,
their commissioner said this time last year when it was all kicking off.
This was how he painted the LIV Tour, and why he didn't want his players to go and join it. Have a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAY MONAHAN, COMMISSIONER, PGA TOUR: I think you'd have to be living under a rock to not know that there are significant implications and as it
relates to the families of 9/11, I have two families that are close to me that lost loved ones, and so my heart goes out to them.
And I would ask, you know any player that has left or any player that would ever consider leaving, have you ever had to apologize for being a member of
the PGA Tour?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
RIDDELL: Zain that was less than a year ago and such a different tune from the PGA Tour today. Jay Monahan was on television this morning, all smiles
talking about this new deal, business venture, this new collaboration.
We don't yet know exactly how it is all going to shake out, how it's going to look, but the lawsuits are over, and they're all going to play nice
together in the sandbox.
ASHER: Don Riddell, live for us there, thank you so much.
All right the reaction from professional golfers depends on where they stood when the battle lines were drawn. Players on the LIV Golf Tour, none
more famous than Phil Mickelson are welcoming the move calling it an awesome day.
Brooks Koepka trolled the Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee, who has been a fierce critic of players accepting Saudi money.
Those who stuck with the PGA Tour like Wesley Bryan were caught by surprise and wanted to know why they were learning about the deal on Twitter.
PGA Tour commissioner, Jay Monahan has sent a memo to players. He also appeared on CNBC alongside his Saudi rival turned partner.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MONAHAN: There's been a lot of tension in our sport over the last couple of years, but what we're talking about today is coming together to unify the
game of golf and to do so under one umbrella.
And together we're going to move forward and we're going to take efforts to grow and expand this great game and to take it to new heights.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ASHER: Joining us live now to explain the legal impacts of this move is Craig Seebald, an expert in antitrust law and the co-head of litigation and
regulatory at Vinson & Elkins.
Craig, thank you so much for being with us. I just want to start with the broad strokes here because a lot of people are not as familiar with all the
lawsuits between these two leagues, between these two tours that were basically resolved in one fell swoop today.
Just walk us through what happened after LIV arrived on the scene.
CRAIG SEEBALD, CO-HEAD LITIGATION AND REGULATORY DEPARTMENT, VINSON & ELKINS: Yes, after LIV arrived on the scene, it was viewed as a big threat
to the PGA Tour, and there was litigation that was filed out in California liv. LIV and players -- it started with the players and then LIV joined the
lawsuit, alleged that the PGA Tour was monopolizing the market for professional golf exhibitions, and it led to a pretty aggressive litigation
schedule and lots of discovery out in California, and was set for trial next year.
So there was definitely a big battle going on between the two. And the issue really at the heart of it was the PGA Tour, excluding competition
from LIV by enforcing some of its policies and not letting certain players play on both tours.
ASHER: It is interesting, because it sort of seems bizarre that you know, the answer to an antitrust dispute is apparently for two competitors to
join forces, right?
So do you think this partnership is actually likely to draw scrutiny from regulators? What are your thoughts on that?
SEEBALD: Yes. No, that is exactly what I've been thinking on today. I don't think this is the last chapter. I mean, could you imagine Airbus and Boeing
suing each other? And then they decide, oh, we'll just form a partnership and --
ASHER: Right. Exactly.
SEEBALD: And we'll divide up the airplane market. I mean, everybody would be outraged about that.
So the same rules apply. Hey, this is a big business. Golf is a huge business, a billion dollar business and more. So we're going to see the
regulators, if they're not done with the regulators, and I think it's going to play out in two different ways.
One is the Justice Department has an ongoing monopolization investigation of the PGA Tour that was announced last summer, and so I think the Justice
Department is going to look at this potentially and ask, well, is this another act of monopolization combining the two competitors? So you've got
And then I think just from a merger review standpoint, the Justice Department, European regulators, other regulators -- this is going to pack
the entire world -- are going to look at this and say, isn't this odd? I mean, you have the two competitors or the three competitors, actually,
because you've got the European tour combining under one entity and just going to control golf? How is that going to be permissible?
So I think there's a lot of questions to be remained and a lot of room for the antitrust laws to look at this. So, I think this is a long way from
being decided to have this. Actually, I have my pretty strong doubts that this will actually ever happen.
ASHER: Interesting. Why do you say that?
SEEBALD: You know, so LIV filed a -- almost, I think over a hundred-page complaint saying that the PGA Tour was a monopolist and had all this
evidence in there, and had spent the last year saying they monopolized the golf tour.
You know, those are -- when you file a complaint, it is a sworn statement basically that your lawyer files that you just affirmed to be true. What do
you say now? Never mind. None of that was true.
SEEBALD: We now compete against football or we may compete against soccer, or we compete against everything else. I mean, you really have to do a
major turn, 180-degree turn to be able to say, okay, well forget about that. Well, that's not true. We now have this broad market we compete it
and we're not a monopolist. Sorry about all of that time we wasted.
ASHER: The about face is fascinating, because you know, Don Riddell who was speaking just before you was basically saying that like a year ago, Jay
Monahan, the PGA commissioner was basically saying, listen, for all the players who have left for LIV Golf, he would ask them listen, have you ever
had to apologize for being part of the PGA Tour in the way that you're having to apologize right now? So there's an about face on multiple fronts.
I do have to run we have to leave it there. Thank you so much for being with us. We appreciate it.
SEEBALD: Thank you.
ASHER: All right, the collapse of a critical dam in southern Ukraine is forcing hundreds of people to leave their homes as floodwaters rise.
Upstream, concern that the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant could ultimately be at risk. The UN watchdog, AIEA says that there is no
Aerial footage shows water surging through the remains of the Nova Kakhovka dam. Kyiv is blaming Russia for blowing it up while Moscow says Ukraine
destroyed it in an act of sabotage, but it's still not clear if this was caused by an attack at all.
Satellite imagery has revealed the dam was damaged a few days ago. Ukraine's Economy minister told CNN, she said Russia is to blame.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
YULIA SVYRYDENKO, UKRAINIAN ECONOMY MINISTER: Honestly, they act like a terroristic state and no one can predict their actions and that is why, you
know, I ask you also to have the small talk with you, as we would like to say that there are huge losses of our economy, there are huge losses in the
sense of people. So that's why what we need to do it just to (strength) your support, and not to (afraid) Russia, and to keep fighting together
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ASHER: For a look at the situation on the ground in the flood zone, here is CNN's Fred Pleitgen reporting a short time ago.
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: After the Nova Kakhovka dam burst, water has been inundating villages around this area.
We're in the south of Ukraine in the area around Kherson. And in fact, right now, I am in the city of Kherson.
So as you can see, the water here is not only putting villages in the surrounding area under water, but it is actually also inside the city
And one of the things to be aware of is in the very short time that we've been on the ground here, we could see this water already rise considerably.
So what's going on right now is that the water level continues to go up as water is gushing from the Dnipro River here towards this city and towards
other cities in the region as well.
Now, we've been in touch with a local security services here and they're telling us that everybody who works in the city, anybody who has any sort
of role is helping to evacuate people from areas like over there.
There are still hundreds of people who are trapped on their houses, some of them inside their houses and everything is being mobilized right now from
boats to large trucks to try and get these people out, and again, hundreds of people have already been brought out, but at the same time, this is very
much an ongoing operation.
The folks here tell us that operation is going to continue to go on. Now of course, all of this is a huge issue and also a huge risk not just as far as
the environment is concerned, as far as this area is concerned, but of course also, as far as the safety and security of the population here on
the ground is concerned.
The Ukrainians are extremely angry about this. They blame this squarely on the Russians. We've heard that the Russians for their part say that it was
the Ukrainians. In any case, there are a lot of people here in this city and in the surrounding areas who are suffering a great deal.
Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Kherson, Ukraine.
ASHER: Let's bring in CNN's Scott McLean joining us live now from London. You just had Fred just talking about how many people are suffering as a
result of the accident regarding this dam or the attack. Obviously, we still don't know what happened. Both sides are blaming each other, but just
walk us through what we know in terms of what did actually happen here -- Scott.
SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, still a lot of unanswered questions. But there are a couple of things to keep in mind, Zain.
First off, this dam actually was damaged back in November last year during fighting between Ukrainians and the Russians when the Ukrainians were
launching a counterattack at that point to take pack, a huge swath of the Kherson region and the city of Kherson, as well. At that time, a Russian
official went on state TV to say that it would take a year to get it back up and running as per normal. So there is that to keep in mind.
It is also important to keep in mind these images as well. So this is what it looked like last week, we'll give you a closer look. So notice this part
right here is missing from the picture yesterday.
Now, if you look more granularly at day-to-day images, which are a bit grainy, it seems like last Thursday or Friday is when this actually
Now, how much this affected the structural stability of the actual dam? We don't know. We also don't know whether this was caused by fighting or
something else or just the gradual breakdown of this dam, which obviously is literally right on the frontline of a warzone.
It's also important, Zain, to know that obviously the water is flowing this way. So Kherson, that's where Fred Pleitgen is right now and he says that
the water continues to rise, and you can see why.
So this dam is holding back an enormous amount of water in this reservoir. It's actually some 18 cubic kilometers of water. It's about the same volume
as the Great Salt Lake in Utah if you're familiar with that.
The other thing to keep in mind is that look, this will crest according to the head of the main company that runs the hydroelectric power in Ukraine,
this will crest tomorrow morning at 5:00 AM, local time. But this is going to be more than three meters high in the city of Kherson, and it's not like
it's going to go down gradually, right after that, like we see a normal river flooding, it's actually going to stay that way for four whole days
because the volume of water that's coming out of there is about six inches per hour worth of water.
So it would be about eight or 10 days before all of the water has managed to filter through, and obviously this reservoir is going to be just a
shadow of its former self.
Now both sides are blaming each other. The Ukrainians say that the Russians planted bombs on the dam itself. The Russians say that the Ukrainians have
good reasons to do it for two reasons. Number one, it has to do with water and specifically Crimea. Crimea has had issues with water since 2014, since
the area was annexed because Ukraine essentially cut them off from the main power or water supply, which came from elsewhere. It was only after the
full scale invasion last year that they managed to get access to a canal, which connected them directly to this reservoir and they haven't had the
same kind of problem since.
The other reason, Zain, is because, of course, this counteroffensive that we've been hearing so much about that Ukraine may or may not have launched
already. We don't know. They're not saying, but the Russian said that look, this started two days ago and frankly, it's not been going well.
So they say that the Ukrainians blew this up to stop the counter to Ukraine's counteroffensive from moving in the opposite direction. Now we
have heard from US and Western officials who said that say that there has been a marked uptick in fighting over the last 48 hours. Whether that's the
counteroffensive or whether that's the Ukrainian simply testing the Russian defenses, we don't know, but either way it certainly complicates things
here on the ground for the actual fighting that's taking place -- Zain.
ASHER: All right, Scott McLean live for us there, thank you.
Up next, protesters storm the Paris Olympic headquarters. The strikes against pension reform maybe losing steam, but is still causing a lot of
disruption. We hear from airline executives about what that means for their businesses. That's next.
ASHER: In France today, the 14th day of nationwide pension protests and possibly one of the last. Protesters are campaigning against raising the
state pension age, which will go into effect in September. Some demonstrators clashed with police in the city of Nantes.
In Paris, protesters stormed the headquarters of the committee organizing next year's Summer Olympics. The government put today's turnout at
approximately 280,000 sharply down from previous protests.
The disruption is taking a toll on European air travel. The CEO of RyanAir said his airline had to cancel 400 flights, many of which weren't even
going to France. His comments come as the IATA conference is underway in Istanbul this week.
Our Richard Quest asked airline CEOs how strikes have disrupted them.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WILLIE WALSH, SECRETARY-GENERAL, IATA: If the French want to shut the country down, fine, you know, let them shut their country down. But it's
the idea that they can shut Europe down that is causing problems because once France goes on strike, you can't overfly the country, and then it is
putting pressure on Air Traffic Control systems around France and that is causing delays and cancellations in other areas, so it's chaos.
BENJAMIN SMITH, CEO, AIR FRANCE-KLM: The French air traffic controllers strike, we don't support, whether high altitude or whether it's takeoff and
landing off in the French region. I mean, this has been a real challenge for us for the last five months.
So, our belief is this needs to reduce or this needs to stop.
MEHMET TEVFIC NANE, CHAIR, PEGASUS AIRLINES: Those strikes are hurting us, really hurting us, but I believe that during the summertime and with the
agreements of the unions, most of the strikes are through. I'm crossing my fingers, but most of the strikes are through.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ASHER: Despite the turmoil in France, it is shaping up to be a banner year for the air industry.
Richard Quest spoke to the head of IAG, the parent of airlines like British Airways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus. He asked whether his carriers were ready
for the summer.
LUIS GALLEGO, CEO, INTERNATIONAL AIRLINES GROUP: We already. I think we are in a different situation we compare with the previous year. So last year we
hired 17,000 people at group level in the different airlines. And this year we have hired 2,500 people; in Iberia, 2,400. So with that, we have enough
resources the main issue is that we are an ecosystem. It is not only us, we need also the air traffic controllers working on the airports, working, so.
RICHARD QUEST, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST, "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS": Which airport worries you the most? Is it Heathrow?
GALLEGO: Heathrow, yes. Still Heathrow. I think when you see the performance, so for example of Iberia in Madrid, they are one of the most
punctual airlines in the world. In the case of Heathrow, it has been challenging.
So I think summer is going to be better. It's also true that the French ATC strikes are hurting a lot, and that has an impact in the connecting
traffic, and then we need to wait for the long-haul traffic.
QUEST: If we look to the future, and you've got -- I mean, Aer Lingus is slightly off to the side and Vueling is again doing its own thing.
Essentially the two network carriers, BA, Iberia can you bring them closer together so that they operate essentially, you know, with Iberia doing the
long haul South America bit and other parts, BA doing -- can you bring them closer together?
GALLEGO: We have to think about the model that we have for the group because it is different to other groups. For example, Air France-KLM, or
others because the overlap of the network that we have between British Airways and Iberia is reduced.
So at the end BA, they fly mainly north Atlantic, Iberia, South Atlantic. So I think the model that we have is different and it makes sense. So what
we are trying to do now is to reinforce Madrid hub and that is the reason we are trying to do the Europa operation that you know we are in the
process to try to obtain the competition approval.
But I think the model we have where capital allocation is key, and the different airlines, they compete for capital is the right one and before
COVID, we were one of the most profitable group of airlines in the world and that's what we want to continue.
QUEST: Do you worry that ITA in Italy becomes as part of Lufthansa? Is that a concern -- a more powerful Lufthansa Group?
GALLEGO: I think consolidation is good. We need more consolidation getting in Europe. We are trying to do Europa; Lufthansa, they're trying to do ITA.
You know, the tap, now they're going to start the process. I think consolidation is going to be good for the customer, it is going to be good
also for the development of the different companies for the employees. So I think, it is good if at the end, we can create a bigger and stronger groups
that for example in crisis like COVID helped.
ASHER: That consolidation is an evidence over at Lufthansa with its deal to purchase a large minority stake in ITA airways of Italy, the successor to
the failed Alitalia.
Richard Quest spoke to the CEO of ITA, Fabio Lazzerini and asked him what's changed since the Alitalia days.
FABIO LAZZERINI, CEO, ITA AIRWAYS: It's understandable you see us as an evolution or actually as a consequence of what happened with Alitalia, but
it was, believe me, it was truly a startup. We started up everything from scratch.
We started with the first 52 aircrafts coming from the old Alitalia, leased from the lessors that they used to have, but we built, I would say a
radically different company than before.
First of all, we chose since the very first day to go single manufacturer, single aircraft manufacturer, if you remember Air Italia, 110 aircrafts in
2019. Three different producers now, we chose Airbus. Period.
We decided to invest heavily in technology, but we decided to focus on long goal premium traffic instead of just doing Milan-Rome back and forth 25
times a day because it was profitable, we started with that.
QUEST: For years, Alitalia lost money. For years, Alitalia was bailed out in one shape or another. So what changed besides a restructuring, what
changed in the mentality, and the conceptualization that means this ITA is not just Alitalia with a different name, a different number, and different
LAZZERINI: First of all, focused on long goal. It is a segmentation of customers focused on corporate and premier leisure. I mention it because
that was not the case of Alitalia, and by the way, premium leisure is paying off because all the recovery is coming from that segment in this
particular moment, and we are designing the network in a way that there is a consistency between the short and medium haul and the long haul not to
have an unbalanced situation like it used to be in the past.
QUEST: So now Lufthansa is basically going to buy ITA assuming regulatory approval, which is not as assumption that one can take for granted. What
will ITA be in a Lufthansa world?
LAZZERINI: One thing is important. Lufthansa is entering into the capital of ITA being convinced that our business plan is solid. One reason why they
are entering into because they saw things are progressing compared to the past. It's a different airline.
We are one of the few airlines in Europe that has been certified where our pilots can fly short to medium to long haul, narrow body to wide bodies,
same pilots can move into things.
So we've been innovating and at the same time increasing the fleet by far. By the way, we are replacing the old generation aircrafts with the new
generation aircrafts. We have orders to go to 2026 to be the cleanest fleet in Europe with 80 percent of the aircrafts of new generation.
Of course, we're far from being perfect. That's where I see the great benefit of entering a large and successful group like Lufthansa, both from
industrial and commercial point of view.
QUEST: Now Lufthansa has had its own industrial problems. So Lufthansa doesn't come to the table with clean hands, in a sense, with its pilots and
various unions. But ITA, with the history of Alitalia's industrial difficulty. How does these two very different cultures come together?
LAZZERINI: I cannot comment on the Lufthansa issues that you are mentioning because I don't know them. I can tell you that in 18 months, we didn't have
one single strike. We didn't cancel one single flight because of lack of captains, of lack of crew. We didn't have any problem at all.
We renewed the Labor Agreement back in February this year, we had a very aggressive labor contract in the startup phase. I think, I don't see any
major issue of integration into the group.
QUEST: Will you stay in your job? I mean, there's a certain vagueness. You know, Carsten has been less than -- he sort of suggested that a new CEO, so
are you a dead man walking?
LAZZERINI: That's another open question for me, too. I designed this airline in May 2020 when the company didn't even exist, and I have the
great satisfaction of having recruited 4,000 people from scratch, having the company, which is -- the airline which is performing quite well.
And this is a cycle and putting the company in the hands of a large group to grant the company a future, that's the mission that we see. I mean, it's
not personal issue, it is a company issue. The company is much more important than the single person.
ASHER: Still to come, TV and movie stars want to make sure they have control of that digital doubles. SAG-AFTRA's chief negotiator, next.
ASHER: Still to come, TV and movie stars want to make sure that they have control of their digital doubles. SAG-AFTRA's chief negotiator is next.
ASHER: Prince Harry was cross-examined today in a London courtroom in his landmark civil case against the Mirror Group Newspapers.
Harry claims the publisher accessed phone and other methods to get details about his private life. The Mirror Group disputes the allegations and they
say the duke of Sussex lacks the evidence to prove them.
It's a landmark case for several reasons.
Let's bring in our royal correspondent, Max Foster.
Max, here is the thing, it is a tall order to prove that these journalists, these newspapers hacked into Prince Harry's phone together, to gather the
pieces of information in question.
Of course, it is likely, even possible the newspaper had other means of gathering the said information.
Walk us through what Prince Harry had to prove today.
MAX FOSTER, CNN ANCHOR & CNN ROYAL CORRESPONDENT: It was a cross examination in the way that they chose to do that for -- they took each
article and they broke down what the sources might have been.
So, constantly knocking down the idea that phone hacking had been used to get the information in those stories.
For example, a story that his ex-girlfriends scolding him for wearing a Nazi outfit, a suggestion from Harry's side that that was, again, through
But actually, the lawyer for Mirror Group saying it didn't, it came from her uncle.
So they went through each and every story, breaking things down, Harry wasn't particularly across the detail.
His bigger point was that all together, these articles had a big impact on him growing up, made him paranoid, made him lose friends, his circle
shrunk, and it had a huge impact on him. So he's saying, overall, they had a huge impact.
But it is much more forensic from Mirror Group's point view, trying to take away all of the claims of phone hacking.
As you say, it is down to Harry to prove that there was phone hacking. The onus is on him in this case.
Mirror Group are actually denying all of these allegations in relation to all of these articles.
ASHER: How is this affecting Prince Harry's reputation in the U.K. in terms of whether or not there is sympathy for him here at all?
FOSTER: Overtime, when you hear these stories again and again, and they are fundamentally the same, he was forced out of the country because of tabloid
intrusion, and there were illegal methods used to get along those stories.
We've heard it so many times before. A lot of these allegations were in the Netflix documentary and in the book as well.
I think that there were no major bombshells of revelation this time around because we've heard so much before.
But this is a long-term mission for Harry to effectively reform the British tabloid industry. He has multiple cases going on involving all of the
tabloids, and they are all very similar in their essence. This is a massive battle for him.
And the public, they are engaged to some extent, but not in the way that they were early on when all of these revelations were new.
ASHER: Max Foster, thank you so much.
Members of the largest actor's union in the U.S. have voted overwhelmingly to strike if the union cannot reach a deal with studios over the use of
At the heart of the controversy are digital doubles, computerized recreations of a real human being. The same technology that enabled the
actor, Peter Cushing, who died in 1994, to appear in the 2016 movie, "Star Wars, Robe One."
Advocates say that it like actors take on more work and start multiple projects at the same time. Opponents say it will take away work and erode
actors' rights to their own likeness.
Duncan Crabtree-Ireland is SAG-AFTRA chief negotiator. He joins us now from Los Angeles.
Duncan, thank you so much for being with us.
Just walk us through what your fears are in terms of how A.I. will revolutionize the movie industry. Especially when it comes to the use of
DUNCAN CRABTREE-IRELAND, CHIEF NEGOTIATOR, SAG-AFTRA: There is no doubt that A.I. can have some positive benefits. It also puts real risks.
I think from the point of performers, the risks include having people use A.I. technology to generate voice or image or likeness models of a person.
And then be able to have them do whatever kind of performance in the future that is desired without necessarily having the approval of the performer
whose image is being used.
We've seen this abuse going on right now on the Internet with deepfakes, especially deepfake pornography. And our members really want to make sure
that they are protected from that.
And we feel the best way to do that is by ensuring that there is a principle of informed consent for any kind of use of A.I. to deal with a
person's image, likeness, persona, et cetera.
And also that other before compensations for any time someone's likeness is used. An actor's stock in trade is their persona, is their image, their
So if they want to take that and use that to help generate a commercial project, they should be paid fairly for that.
ASHER: Just explain what that might mean in practical terms.
Essentially if you want to use an actor's digital double, or likeness, you would assign a separate contract with them in terms of how, and when you
could use their voice, their image, what purposes you could use it for.
Explain to us the details of how it would work.
CRABTREE-IRELAND: That is exactly right. When you are creating a digital double, it could be for several purposes.
One purpose could be to supplement a performance that is going to be done by that performer. Let's say that performer is going to actually act out a
role, there might need to be re-shoots or other things. And the producer wants to have a digital double available for that.
That is one type of view that might be made and that would be negotiated as part of the performers' contract for that project.
Another use might be to use that digital double to do the entirety of the performance for a project. That has already been done, as you mentioned.
You mentioned the Peter Cushing example. You mentioned other examples. And Paul Walker is another example.
And in those cases, then the informed consent really comes from negotiation over what the scope of that use will be. A special contract is written for
that and the compensation is negotiated.
All of that happens under the collective agreement which all of those performers and every other performer who works for the major studios or
independent producers on SAG-AFTRA -- all of it is subject to those terms.
And so it's really important that we establish that principle. The industry has been following it but we really want to get it locked in and make sure
that there is a clear understanding that those are the rules of the road as we move forward with more A.I. technology.
ASHER: Don't you think that the studios will have to play ball? It is one thing to have a writers strike, but the industry could still move forward
Especially because there are so many spec movie scripts that have already been paid for that the studio already owns. Obviously, it is a bit more
complicated than TV shows.
But certainly, with film projects that have already been paid for in terms of buying scripts, the studios can always move forward in terms of moving
forward into production.
However, when it comes to actors, that is a different game altogether. What is your expectation in terms of what it's going to happen between now and
CRABTREE-IRELAND: My expectation is that we are all going to work hard to negotiate a fair deal. And hopefully, by the end of the month, we will have
a fair deal in place that we are -- our members will be happy with, that is fair to them, and covers the issues that they need dealt with and that the
industry can live with.
I will say, in my view, the writer strike has already had a very big impact on the industry because, even though there is some examples like you
mentioned, where sometimes projects go forward in the absence of a writer, that is really not ideal.
It has a huge impact on production both on the TV and streaming side as well as a feature side.
But I think the reality is that if we can get a fair deal by the end of the month, then we will be looking at the strike authorization we just received
from our members yesterday by an overwhelming majority.
Almost 98 percent of our members voting yes on the request to give the authority to our board to call a strike that is needed.
That is not to say that we are going to go on strike. That is to say that we are going into this negotiation to make a deal. But if we cannot get a
fair deal, we will do what is necessary to get one.
ASHER: Which, by the way, would, of course, cripple the entertainment industry if your members end up going on strike at the end of the month.
Let's hope and pray it does not get to that.
Duncan, thank you so much.
ASHER: Thank you so much for being on the show. We appreciate it.
ASHER: All right. And that is "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS. I will be back at the top of the hour.
Up next, "CONNECTING AFRICA."
ELENI GIOKOS, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: I am Eleni Giokos, and this is CONNECTING AFRICA, the show in which you hear from the continent's finest
Regular viewers will know that I am usually in the state-of-the-art studio, but not this month.
For a change of scene, I've come to the Seychelles. It is a stunning archipelago, made up of 150 islands in the Indian Ocean.
It's known for its majestic beaches, it's natural beauty. But that is not the story that I am here to tell.
I will be looking to the country's blue economy. And also what it means for the Seychelles to be part of a common market for Eastern and Southern
There's plenty to learn and look forward to, so let's get on with it. Or as the locals would say, (SPEAKING FOREIGN LANGUAGE).
GIOKOS (voice-over): When you live on an island, the ocean can be a something of an obsession. It's where life happens for many people. It's a
source of income.
The term blue economy was born for this. It's a concept where marine resources are used sustainably while also promoting economic growth.
I've come to meet the man who can help make me make sense of it all.
GIOKOS (on camera): Many countries that have resources, it's either oil or gold, and there are so many other commodities. But your major commodity is
AUBREY LESPERANCE, MANAGER, SEYCHELLES AQUACULTURE DEPARTMENT: It's the ocean, yes.
GIOKOS: The ocean, that is your oil. You have to preserve it.
LESPERANCE: Of course, we do.
GIOKOS: Tell me about the blue economy and what you do.
LESPERANCE: The blue economy is all about the sustainable use and development at the ocean. This is how it was introduced in the country as a
pathway towards recreation of a job.
The improvement of our community through the use of the ocean, in high consideration, given towards the preservation and conservation of the
This is what the blue economy is. It's a combination of integration from the aspect of social development, economic development as well as
reservation for the ocean.
GIOKOS: What is the biggest challenge, would you say? And what you do in making sure that it is sustainable?
LESPERANCE: It has to do with capacity. You know that we are a small country, a developing country, and our workforce, let's use the word new,
and we are evolving and still developing. We don't have all the skills required to push forward, so it's a specific development in the country.
GIOKOS: When you look at how successful Seychelles' been tapping into the blue economy, what would you say the biggest lesson is for other countries
wanting to develop their blue economy?
LESPERANCE: You need to get your community involved in the development. What the main reasons for the development, once they understand the blue
economy, they understand the contribution at the blue economy in the life, this is what will participate heavily and the development.
Our country, Seychelles, were discovered through maritime navigation, maritime transport.
One of our first economic sources of revenue was from maritime trade, starting from our descendants, historical development. The use of the ocean
has always been a part of our development.
GIOKOS (voice-over): One important facet of the blue economy is aquaculture, a government initiative to boost production of Marine
organisms to meet the growing demand.
(on camera): So how are you going to create the balance in terms of what you are seeing in terms of wild fish availability, farming, plus making
sure that it is sustainable across the board, as you increase your numbers?
LESPERANCE: I've worked at the Seychelles fishing authority for 15 years, and I've been to countless committee meetings with stakeholders, fishermen
and people in the community.
We've actually observed that there are a lot of fish species being heavily fished. You see the sizes, a dwindling number of fish being landed, and
also the size that the fish has reduced quite significantly.
GIOKOS: What are your aims right now as you organize?
LESPERANCE: We are aiming for the full entire sector to go up to a production capacity of 60,000 tons within the next 20 to 30 years.
GIOKOS: That's around a $400 million revenue stream, right?
LESPERANCE: That's quite a lot of --
GIOKOS: The big revenue.
LESPERANCE: It's a big target, as well, for the country. We are really trying to align ourselves.
GIOKOS: So how are you speaking to community leaders and community members and the fishermen? It must be difficult for them to face the reality.
LESPERANCE: Most of the management plans of the special authority that I am putting into place right now, we've been trying to get the input from the
community themselves. And also combining this with scientific evidence of what is happening to our fisheries.
At first, when we introduced aquaculture as a new alternative, it was not welcomed, because they go at the fish. I can see them realizing this issue.
And now they are really accepting aquaculture as an alternate way to provide fish in Seychelles.
GIOKOS: -- is this part of your sort of thinking that you want to expand more into the African continent and capitalize on the trade body that
Seychelles is part of?
LESPERANCE: Yes, definitely. On the fishery side and by cast a fish unwanted, there is discussion about how to maybe trade with other
We begun to farm fish, obviously. We're looking at other markets in the continent. I know South Africa has got a very good fresh fish market
demand, especially in niche markets, like sushi, from sea urchins farming. So you've got quite a lot.
Because Seychelles is aiming for a niche market. We do have certain countries in Africa coming up as a good destination for export of these
Seychelles does not have a lot of land for agriculture, so that is why we're trying to put a lot of emphasis on our ocean and trying to see what
we can farm.
There might be some markets for some inputs of other product development in other countries in Africa as well.
GIOKOS: Welcome back. I am Eleni Giokos. I am in the western Indian Ocean, in the Seychelles, made up of a series of small islands with a population
Now, Kenya, is also part of East Africa, with a population of 50 million people. Its bustling cities seem a world apart.
We went to Nairobi to visit Crown Paints, a company that produces three million meters of paint every month. It has operations in Rwanda, Uganda
and Tanzania, making it a significant player in this part of the world.
GIOKOS: (voice-over): Crown Paints has been doing business for 65 years. The company reports revenues in millions of dollars, says its employs
around 1,000 people, making the most of their geographical setting is key for the business.
RAKESH RAO, CEO, CROWN PAINTS: Kenya is a big hub. So many products reproduce here and sent it to other East African countries. I think it's
great in all of this for free movement of commerce in East Africa.
GIOKOS: He sees that having a presence in the East African countries will have long term benefits.
RAO: I think for any company, we know the -- East Africa is on basic right for any company the girl. From Uganda, you can cover South Sudan and Congo.
That is what at the biggest export markets.
There is a reason that we have opened our manufacturing in Uganda to look at and export market like Sudan.
GIOKOS: Crown Paints describes itself as the most innovative paint company in East Africa. They proudly point to their computerized tinting machines,
which they say allows them to dispense thousands of different shades in minutes.
They also say that they have an extensive deal network in urban and rural areas, which allows them to work with both the construction and retail
RAO: The company advantage, which we had, was department, is the number one quality brand. The undisputed number one quality brand. Our customers tell
us, our innovations new product launch, that we care for enrollment and society.
I think we were called on across all the brand, because that multi - So I think we were called on across all the brands. And that is the reason that
the brand are always been liked by the Kenyans.
We deliver what they expect. The public would say it's very good money.
GIOKOS: But alongside what he thinks that the tributes that up the company stand out, he is always quick to acknowledge the geographical advantages
that come with having a business located where Crown Paints started.
RAO: Kenya is very competitive. Working culture in Kenya's business- friendly, so, of course, when you manufacture more, your cost the production cost down.
Plus, you have access to good support services here. I think most importantly for Kenya, you are very smart, they know what they're doing.
They can work smartly towards solutions.
GIOKOS: But he believes that he succeeds long term, the future involves expansion into new territories.
RAO: The reason is very simple. Kenya, of course, we have strong market share. We have set customers.
But the growth prospect will always challenge to grow by more than 20-25 percent. It will always be a challenge.
Because the satisfied customers, they always have capacity. They can't go up 40 percent. Do have a growth, we need to expand to other countries.
GIOKOS: A very impressive operation.
Now, we visited two countries in East Africa separated by a massive stretch of ocean, vastly different, but both united in their vision for more
ASHER: Hello, everyone. I'm Zain Asher. It is the dash for the closing bell, and we are less than a minute away.
It's been quite a big day on Wall Street. Investors are looking ahead to the Federal Reserve rate decision next week.
The Dow Jones has been climbing the past two hours but it is basically flat right now.
Looking at the Dow components, strong gains from two financial stocks, AmEx and Goldman Sachs. A few Farmers (ph) stocks are lower as well. All right.
That's your dash to the bell. I'm Zain Asher. The closing bell is ringing on full speed right now. And "THE LEAD" with Jake Tapper is next.