A coalition of entertainment industry workers is asking the U.S. government to put the brakes on Hollywood production in Canada, the Los Angeles Times reports.

The Screen Actors Guild of America, Teamsters and several unions representing Hollywood's technical workers Tuesday filed a petition with the U.S. trade representative alleging that Canadian film and TV subsidies have led to U.S. job losses.

The complaint alleges that Canadian government subsidies that target U.S. film and TV productions constitute unfair trade practices and violate Canada's obligations under the World Trade Organization.

"We are committed to exploring every method we can to bring film and television production back to the United States," said Gretchen Koerner, who chairs the national legislative committee of the Screen Actors Guild. "For decades we have watched as American producers head north to produce movies, television series and commercials."

Although cross-border trade disputes are common, they typically involve such commodities as corn and softwood lumber, not movies and TV shows.

The petition marks the first of its kind backed by entertainment industry unions, highlighting a long-standing hot-button issue in Southern California, which in the last decade has lost thousands of film and TV jobs as production has migrated to cheaper locales offering tax credits and other sweeteners.

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