With the SAG-AFTRA strike appearing extremely unlikely to end before Halloween, actors have seen their costume options restricted. A leaked memo from the guild advised actors not to wear costumes with ties to specific film and TV characters — even from franchises that they have no involvement with — to avoid giving the appearance of promoting work from struck companies.

“Let’s use our collective power to send a loud and clear message to our struck employers that we will not promote their content without a fair contract,” the memo read.

While the guidelines only apply to actors who plan to make public appearances or post on social media for Halloween, many still saw the advice as excessive. Former Screen Actors Guild president Melissa Gilbert took to her personal Instagram account to criticize the rules, dismissing them as an unhelpful distraction.

“THIS is what you guys come up with? Literally no one cares what anyone wears for Halloween,” Gilbert wrote in response to the union’s costume guidelines. “I mean, do you really think this kind of infantile stuff is going to end the strike? We look like a joke. Please tell me you’re going to make this rule go away… and go negotiate!”

Gilbert went on to tag the accounts of guild leaders Fran Drescher and Duncan Crabtree-Ireland and asked them to focus on more substantive issues.

 “For the love of God, people are suffering mightily and this is what you have to say… c’mon guys,” she wrote. “This is the kind of silly bullshit that keeps us on strike. ‘Let’s enact a policy that makes us look petty and incompetent at the same time.’”

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