Anything Goes : Question About Royalties For Music Used In Films by Lisa Duffy

Lisa Duffy

Question About Royalties For Music Used In Films

I have written and screenplay and my goal is to direct and produce it as an Indie. I am very interested in having a particular popular song from the 80's re-recorded as an unplugged version by an unknown artist to use in the movie. Does anyone have any idea what a re-make would cost in royalties? Thanks in advance to anyone who can answer my question with accuracy or refer me to a source with answers.

Rik Carter

The copyright holder and publisher will set the price. My advice is to contact the publisher and ask them. There isn't a "general" number.

Bert L . Morgan

A client of mine was set on using as big name artist, actually 8 different ones, for a commercial program for dvd sales world wide. She found by the time one reaches the source of the music piece the cost ended up to be around $16,000 each, WHEW! She is now searching buyout music scores.

Robert Gosnell

Hi, Lisa. I don't claim to be an expert on these kind of legal issues, but I can tell you from experience, I co-wrote an indie production which used a couple of popular songs from the 60's, and was told by the producer that the rights to re-record them cost $5000.00 each, with the restriction that they could only be used for the movie. No soundtrack album, or that sort of thing. Best to contact an attorney, just to be safe. Cheers, and good luck!

Gavin Bryan-Tansley

You would be a lot cheaper to commission your own orginal music 'in the style of...' Unless you have very deep pockets, avoid all copyrighted material like the plague.

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