Does the film producer really require a film lawyer or entertainment attorney as a matter of professional practice? An activity lawyer’s own bias and my stacking of the question notwithstanding, which can naturally indicate a “yes” answer 100% of the time – the forthright answer is, “it depends” ;.A number of producers today are themselves film lawyers, entertainment attorneys, and other kinds of lawyers, and so, often can take care of themselves. Nevertheless the film producers to concern yourself with, are those who behave as if they are entertainment lawyers – but without a license or entertainment attorney legal experience to back it up. Filmmaking and movie practice comprise an industry wherein today, unfortunately, “bluff” and “bluster” sometimes serve as substitutes for actual knowledge and experience. But “bluffed” documents and inadequate production procedures will never escape the trained eye of entertainment attorneys working for the studios, the distributors, the banks, or the errors-and-omissions (E&O) insurance carriers. For this reason alone, I suppose, the work function of film production counsel and entertainment lawyer is still secure.
I also guess that there will be a few lucky filmmakers who, through the entire production process, fly under the proverbial radar without entertainment attorney accompaniment. They’ll seemingly avoid pitfalls and liabilities like flying bats are reputed to prevent people’s hair. Through analogy, certainly one of my best friends hasn’t had any medical insurance for a long time, and he is still who is fit and economically afloat – this week, anyway. Taken in the aggregate, many people will be luckier than others, and many people will be more inclined than others to roll the dice.
But it’s all too simplistic and pedestrian to share with oneself that “I’ll prevent the importance of film lawyers if I merely stay out of trouble and be careful” ;.An activity lawyer, especially in the realm of film (or other) production, can be a real constructive asset to a motion picture producer, in addition to the film producer’s personally-selected inoculation against potential liabilities. If the producer’s entertainment attorney has been through the process of film production previously, then that entertainment lawyer has learned most of the harsh lessons regularly dished out by the commercial world and the film business.
The film and entertainment lawyer can therefore spare the producer a lot of those pitfalls. How? By clear thinking, careful planning, and – this is actually the absolute key – skilled, thoughtful and complete documentation of most film production and related activity. The film lawyer shouldn’t be looked at as simply the person seeking to ascertain compliance. Sure, the entertainment lawyer may sometimes be the one who says “no” ;.Nevertheless the entertainment attorney can be a positive force in the production as well.
The film lawyer can, in the span of legal representation, assist the producer as a successful business consultant, too. If that entertainment lawyer has been a part of scores of film productions, then your movie producer who hires that film lawyer entertainment attorney benefits from that very cache of experience. Yes, it sometimes may be difficult to stretch the film budget allowing for counsel, but professional filmmakers tend to view the legal cost expenditure to be a fixed, predictable, and necessary one – akin to the fixed obligation of rent for the production office, or the expense of film for the cameras. Though some film and entertainment lawyers may price themselves from the budget range of the typical independent film producer, other entertainment attorneys do not.
Want it or not, the film lawyer entertainment attorney continues, “Film is a speculative business, and the statistical majority of movies can fail economically – even at the San Fernando Valley film studio level. It is irrational to perform a film business or any other kind of business out of one’s own personal bank account” ;.Besides, it seems unprofessional, a real concern if the producer desires to attract talent, bankers, and distributors at any point in the future.
Your choices of where and how to file an entity in many cases are prompted by entertainment lawyers but then driven by situation-specific variables, including tax concerns associated with the film or movie company sometimes. The film producer should let an activity attorney take action and take action correctly. Entity-creation is affordable. Good lawyers don’t look at incorporating a consumer as a profit-center anyway, because of the obvious prospect of new business that an entity-creation brings. legal directory While the film producer should know that under U.S. law a consumer can fire his/her lawyer whenever you want at all, many entertainment lawyers who do the entity-creation work get asked to do further benefit that same client – especially when the entertainment attorney bills the very first job reasonably.
I wouldn’t recommend self-incorporation by a non-lawyer – anymore than I’d tell a film producer-client what actors to hire in a motion picture – or anymore than I’d tell a D.P.-client what lens to make use of on a particular film shot. As will be true on a film production set, everybody has their particular job to do. And I genuinely believe that the moment the producer lets a reliable entertainment lawyer do their job, things will begin to gel for the film production in methods couldn’t even be originally foreseen by the movie producer.
2. SOLICITING INVESTMENT: This problem also often takes its wake-up call of sorts. Let’s say that the film producer wants to make a motion picture with other people’s money. (No, not a unique scenario). The film producer will more than likely start soliciting funds for the movie from so-called “passive” investors in a variety of possible ways, and may actually start collecting some monies as a result. Sometimes this occurs before the entertainment lawyer hearing about any of it post facto from their client.
If the film producer is not just a lawyer, then your producer should not consider “trying this at home” ;.Want it or not, the entertainment lawyer opines, the film producer will thereby be selling securities to people. If the producer promises investors some pie-in-the-sky results in the context of this inherently speculative business called film, and then collects money on the foundation of this representation, believe me, the film producer can have much more grave problems than conscience to deal with. Securities compliance work is among the most difficult of matters faced by an activity attorney