Warner Bros. CEO David Zaslav Criticized For Boston University Commencement Speech Amid WGA Strike

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David Zaslav, Warner Bros, CEO, WGA Strike, Boston, Boston University

Warner Bros. CEO David Zaslav shipped up to Boston this past weekend to speak at Boston University’s commencement ceremony. The entertainment executive was promptly booed and protested at the ceremony, due to his apparent lack of cooperation with writers during the ongoing WGA Strike.

Zaslav previously told the Hollywood Reporter that he hoped to settle negotiations with the WGA before a strike. Instead, a settlement was not reached, and writers from countless programs continue to strike in both New York and California. The growing list of halted productions has not pushed major production companies to negotiate the writers’ demands yet. Amid lengthy picket lines being joined by celebrities and writers alike, Zaslav quietly slipped away to Boston, and was not met with a warm welcome.

Boston University students were none too pleased with their commencement speaker. The audience booed him and Bostonians gathered with picket signs in protest of his speech. Zaslav graduated from Boston University’s Law School in 1985. He additionally received an honorary degree from the university.

School officials referred to Zaslav as a “media visionary”, and the executive then failed to mention the ongoing strike in his speech. His perceived lack of awareness set off protestors even further. Zaslav attempted to go into detail about his professional journey in the entertainment world, but students’ protest chants overpowered him.

One Twitter user even confirmed that Zaslav had to cross the picket line to exit the stadium after the heavy in-ceremony protests.


Local Boston labor unions additionally joined the picket line in solidarity with the WGA.

A skywriter flew over the ceremony tugging a sign that read “David Zaslav-pay your writers.”


Neither Warner Bros. Studios nor David Zaslav have addressed the awkward graduation speech heard around the world. Current University President Robert A. Brown has not clarified the university’s stance on the strike or their decision to invite Zazlav to speak at the event.

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