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Arts & Entertainment
TV Week: Indians cite mistreatment on 'West'

"Some of the Native Americans who worked on TNT's 12-hour miniseries "Into the West" allege they faced harsh working conditions and were frequently underpaid, and that the production violated child labor laws.

The charges emerged from numerous interviews with Native American extras and crew members. Many of the background performers drove across the country to participate in a miniseries executive produced by Steven Spielberg and dramatizing their cultural history, only to be overworked and undercompensated, sources said.

'They weren't being abused, but they were being undermined, under- paid and being taken advantage of,' said one casting department crew member and cultural liaison who quit in protest over the extras' working conditions.

In response to TelevisionWeek's questions about the allegations, TNT and DreamWorks issued a joint statement: "'Into the West' employed more than a thousand film professionals and the production treated everyone with care, respect and concern for their well-being. We take these specific complaints seriously and will look into them immediately.'"

Get the Story:
Unrest in the West (TV Week 6/13)

Relevant Links:
Into the West -

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