You can hire a writer on a work-for-hire basis, to write a screenplay based on your idea, other material assigned by you, or to write the screenplay the writer pitched to you. “Work-for-hire” means that you are paying the writer and, as a consequence thereof, own the screenplay and its copyright outright. You must enter…

You will need to enter into an “Option / Purchase Agreement” prior to developing, shopping, and producing a screenplay based upon a pre-existing literary property whose copyright you do not own and which is not in the public domain. During the term of the Option/Purchase Agreement, you will have the exclusive right, the “option,” to…

While original screenplays require no legal counsel, there are many instances where you will need to acquire rights prior to developing the idea into a screenplay. In addition to the examples mentioned in the previous screenplay post, here are some additional common types of screenplays that would require legal agreements. “Private Persons” You cannot develop…

The producing process starts with the seed of an idea: a concept borne of the producer’s mind, pitched to the producer by a third party, or triggered by an outside stimulus, such as a writer’s pitch, pre-existing literary property (novel, play, news story, etc.), or life story. Whether you need legal counsel and/or must stop…

You may develop a screenplay based on a public domain work, such as a play by Shakespeare. A public domain work may be used by anyone in any way without the need for permission or payment to the author or the author’s estate. A work is in the public domain when the work lacks copyright…

You are free to independently create works that may be similar to others, as long as you can prove that they were, indeed, completely original to you. The U.S. Copyright Act grants the author of literary property such as a book, video game, screenplay, motion picture, play, etc., the exclusive right to use his creation….

You will require the assistance of an attorney throughout your producing journey. How do you find the right attorney? Well, first off, only retain an “entertainment” attorney (who I will refer to as “attorneys” going forward). Ask friends and colleagues for referrals, read blogs, books, and legal articles by attorneys, and read posts and responses…

Introduction Music is a powerful storytelling tool since it has the ability to convey and heighten the emotion in a scene. Nonetheless, independent film makers, generally out of necessity, under budget for it. Worse even, they spend the money they did budget, on dealing with unforeseen expenses associated with the production or post-production process. Filmmakers…

Introduction Success in the Entertainment Industry requires more than just talent. It, also, requires good Karma , well 1 directed intention, goodwill, and a little bit of luck. The practice and business of law, and my lifelong study of metaphysics, have taught me how to create what I desire while avoiding self-sabotage and all-around bad…

Just about every writer and producer I know or represent is concerned that their ideas will be stolen by some unethical and unscrupulous producer, production company, studio executive or competitor. As such, this article is meant to educate writers and producers regarding the protection of their ideas, treatments, and screenplays. [Read Article]

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