We have someone interested in investing in a film we are producing. I need to write an agreement/contract. Are there any major clauses I need to inlcude or are there any templates or guides out there to follow?
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When it comes to investing I advise doing it through a lawyer. There are major clauses you need to include. It could be devastating if you miss one or two using a templet. I'm sure you already tried Google and was left wanting. I know this isn't what you are hoping for so I apologize in advance. I have seen far to many agreement/contracts that boarder on fraud through no ill intent but because filmmaker hope to save a few hundred dollars by not using a lawyer.
Hi D. Marcus - I approached a top entertainment lawyer here in Miami about this same thing and his quotes were $5,000 for the first set of papers needed, $20,000 for the second lot. I mentioned this to a lawyer friend of mine and he agreed that I could probably draw the papers up myself. I guess it depends if you've got that kind of mind. Similarly a friend of mine needed some immigration papers done recently and her lawyer quoted her $4,000 so she did them herself. Good luck Ramsey, I hope to be in that position myself soon!
If your lawyer friend thinks you can draw up investor contracts yourself I be she knows the templets or guides to follow. Obvious your lawyer friend will not do the work for you for free but she might point you in the right direction if asked. Maybe you could tell us here the DIY film investor agreements your lawyer recommends. It will help all of us.
Erik I would greatly appreciate that!
Erik would you send me your template? Thanks Mark Ratering firstname.lastname@example.org
I could use the template as well! email@example.com
I could also use this template as well please, if you don't mind? Thank you so much. firstname.lastname@example.org
Me too!! email@example.com Thank you,Sir
Erik- I guess we all realize how important an investor agreement is. This is why I love this fellowship. We help each other to achieve our dreams. Again Sir, Thank you
Ensure you indicate what the investors participation is. Ideally they're just investors with zero control. Yes, they could mandate certain things - i.e., a director with experience more than shorts, and the same with actors. Several points: how much are they putting in (total investment), how will they will recoup their initial investment (mention it starts after distribution starts because it could take 6 - 12 months for the project to be released), how the revenue/profits are split after they recoup their initial investment (after the distributor recoups the money they put in and their fee the revenues are split 50/50 between the investors and filmmakers), how long will they be paid out (i.e. the lifecycle - 5 years, 7 years - eventually after all the revenue streams (theatrical, DVD, digital, TV, rentals, and hotels & air) are exhausted the books are closed for them. The monies they receive will be based on when you receive monies from the distributor which is quarterly. Put in a clause of two audits are year against your books, and like wise you will have audit clause with your distributor). Have your LLC or LLP set up, and the deal is between the investors and your LLC/LLP.
Dear friends, A template contract is not a contract and you should be aware about it! A template is a general overview about the agreement and could be used (if you have the skills to understand which is the right model to follow) as a good basis for the real contract. As per example, a treatment is not a screenplay, you could use it as a fantastic basis for the script but this document it is not enough to shoot a film... More important of the contract itself are the negotiations with the possible investors, because each request shall be agreed between parties and translated in clauses (recoupment, way out, participation and eventual shares..) Therefore if you think that a serious investor is interested in your project, I advice you to negotiate trying to understand all its requests without giving it any formal approval (it is always possible to say that your lawyer shall read it before to approve a clause or a deal), then, if the amount of the investment justify the intervention, call your lawyer and close the agreement. If the investment is not important (but it is important for you) then a lawyer could be expensive. In this case try to negotiate and close simple and basic deals without any template of real investment agreement that you are not able to check and negotiate properly. Somethings like "I receive this sum (specify when and how) and I will give you that (a list of recipient, credits, guarantee etc.). Simple and clear will reduce your risks.
Erik could you send me the template too. Thanks.
Erik, I'm in as well, could you forward me your template? Thanks in advance! My email WTC2TEAM@yahoo.com