Now that Suits has become one of the biggest and unlikeliest TV hits of the summer, star Patrick J. Adams took to Instagram to share some behind-the-scenes photos from the USA Network series. Many of the pics featured his former co-star Meghan Markle, but those photos have since been deleted. And it’s not, as you may have assumed, because of some security issue based on Markle’s royal status as Prince Harry’s wife, but because Adams posted the photos amid the SAG-AFTRA strike.
After a slew of commenters accused Adams of breaking strike rules by posting the Suits pics, the actor took to his Instagram Story to issue an apology.
“The last couple of days I foolishly and thoughtlessly let a trip down Suits memory lane distract me from the very real and ongoing fight everyone in @sagafstra continues to wage in its effort to win our membership realistic 21st Century compensation and protections,” he wrote.
“It was an embarrassing oversight for which I’m incredibly sorry,” Adams continued. “So grateful to those who gently and swiftly course-corrected me here. And I look forward to continuing the fight in the days and weeks ahead.”
While the Writers Guild of America ended their months-long strike this week after reaching a new deal with the AMPTP, the Screen Actors Guild strike still rages on. There might, however, be some traction on the negotiation front—on Wednesday, the actors and broadcasters’ union announced that they’re meeting with the AMPTP on Monday.
For now, though, performers still have to abide by strike rules, which ban “promotion or publicity services for work under the TV/Theatrical Contracts,” including social media posts.
It’s unclear whether Adams’ now-deleted posts were an actual breach of the rules, considering he didn’t explicitly encourage viewers to rewatch Suits in any of his captions. On Tuesday, Adams shared two never-before-seen photos of Markle, who plays his love interest on the show, with the caption, “Let’s get serious. Seriously.” The following day, he posted two carousels of throwback pics from the Suits set, one with the caption, “The well is deeeep.”
The former USA Network series, which ran from 2011 to 2019, is currently experiencing a huge yet unexplained surge in popularity on Netflix, one of the major players in SAG’s fight for a fair deal. Whether or not Adams technically crossed the picket line, the posts would presumably lead people back to the streamer. Singer-actress Selena Gomez experienced similar scrutiny in August for posting a photo on Instagram and tagging her Hulu show Only Murders in the Building, before quickly deleting it. SAG did not publicly comment on the situation nor announce whether she would face any repercussions.
It seems like actors are still figuring out how to behave in the midst of what, for many, is their first labor strike. And the announcement that certain shows, like NBC’s Saturday Night Live and other late-night programs, are going back into production after the end of the WGA strike has made things even more confusing.
When it comes to Instagram, at least, it seems like actors might want to stick to posting pics of their pets.