Expectations that the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees union and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers would quickly extend their current contract 16 months before it is due to expire were quickly dashed Wednesday as the two sides ended three days of talks and agreed to meet again at a later date to conclude their negotiations. "These talks have been extremely helpful in understanding the fundamental issues before us in an environment that has been conducive to bargaini ng," IATSE International President Thomas C. Short said in a statement. He did not elaborate on what the "fundamental issues" were. For his part, AMPTP President Nick Counter said that the two had "covered a lot of ground in an opening round that's been both respectful and mutually beneficial." No date for a resumption of the talks was disclosed.