How to Protect Your Financiers for Your Independent Film Project

Hosted by David Zannoni

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David Zannoni

Webinar hosted by: David Zannoni

International Film Business Specialist at Freeway Entertainment

David Zannoni is an international business specialist for Fintage House in the US, Europe, Canada and Latin America territories. Fintage House, the world's most respected company for revenue and rights protection for industry professionals and companies. David negotiates agreements for films and television series and is involved in business development and relationship management globally on hundreds of productions. David is continuously present to make deals and speak at international film markets, festivals and conferences, including: the Cannes Film Festival, the European Film Market (EFM) in Berlin, the American Film Market (AFM), Ventana Sur, the Bogota Audiovisual Market (BAM), and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and travels regularly to the United States, the Netherlands, Europe, and all over Latin America. Full Bio »

Webinar Summary

If you're an independent filmmaker, it's likely you don’t have all of the funds you need to begin or complete your production. In this scenario, you need a film financier to step in and invest equity. While the financier is often hands-off with the actual production, they do have a prominent position in the process. Their assets are your assets, and they need to be protected. Borrowing money is only one step in the process. Assuring your financier that their assets will be protected during the filmmaking and production process is another.

If you’re ready to take your film to the next level but aren’t clear on what financiers expect as far as protection when you borrow, you may be at a disadvantage. Protecting money given to you by someone with a vested interest in your film is extremely important. It’s also good business practice. And going into a conversation knowing what they expect before they hand over any equity - can only work in your favor. Your future lender has expectations. Let's delve into how you can always meet those expectations.

David Zannoni is an international business specialist for Fintage House in the US, Europe, Canada and Latin America territories. Fintage House, the world's most respected company for revenue and rights protection for industry professionals and companies. David negotiates agreements for films and television series and is involved in business development and relationship management globally on hundreds of productions. David is continuously present to make deals and speak at international film markets, festivals and conferences, including: the Cannes Film Festival, the European Film Market (EFM) in Berlin, the American Film Market (AFM), Ventana Sur, the Bogota Audiovisual Market (BAM), and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and travels regularly to the United States, the Netherlands, Europe, and all over Latin America.

David will teach you how you can keep your financiers protected and explain the 6 different options you should take into consideration when you sit down with a financier for your own project. After explaining what the role of a financier on an independent film usually looks like, he will discuss security interests, completion bonds, escrow accounts, collection accounts, legal representation, and compliance, what each of these look like, and how you can use these to best protect your financier. There are variables for every filmmaking scenario, but David will leave you with a much clearer understanding the role of the financier and how you can keep them happy and safe so that they’ll want to work with you time and time again.

 


Praise for David's Previous Stage 32 Webinars:

"David is incredible and lovely and clearly knows his stuff."

- Cynthia P.

"Eye-opening information. A no-brainer approach that wouldn't be so obvious to the uninitiated."

- Gary O.

"By far, the best class I've seen on the subject."

Kirk K.

"David is a fantastic teacher. And what a voice! I could listen to him all day. More importantly, I learned so very much!"

- Isabella T.

What You'll Learn

  • The Role of the Financier in Independent Film Financing
    • Lenders
    • Banks
    • Private lenders
    • Equity investors
  • The Cycle of Film Production, Financing, and Distribution
    • Control of financing funds
    • Sales and distribution
    • Allocation and disbursement of revenues
  • The 6 Ways You Can Protect a Financier’s Position
    • Security Interest
      • What is a security interest?
      • How does the security work?
      • Security interest for the financier
      • The security agreement
    • Completion Bond
      • What is a completion bond?
      • How does the completion bond work?
      • The role of the completion guarantor
      • How a completion bond protects the financier
    • Escrow Account
      • What is an escrow account?
      • How does escrow work?
      • The escrow agent
      • The escrow agreement
      • Escrow to protect the financier
    • Collection Account
      • What is a collection account?
      • How does a collection account work?
      • The role of the collection account manager or CAM
      • How to set up a collection account
      • The collection account management agreement
      • The benefits of a collection account for the financier
    • Legal Representation
      • The role of the entertainment lawyer
      • Closing of film financing
      • Drafting of documentation
      • Importance of legal representation for the financier
    • Compliance
      • Due diligence protocol
      • KYC – Know Your Client
      • The financier vis-à-vis producers, sales agents, and other parties
  • Q&A with David

About Your Instructor

David Zannoni is an international business specialist for Fintage House in the US, Europe, Canada and Latin America territories. Fintage House, the world's most respected company for revenue and rights protection for industry professionals and companies. David negotiates agreements for films and television series and is involved in business development and relationship management globally on hundreds of productions. David is continuously present to make deals and speak at international film markets, festivals and conferences, including: the Cannes Film Festival, the European Film Market (EFM) in Berlin, the American Film Market (AFM), Ventana Sur, the Bogota Audiovisual Market (BAM), and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and travels regularly to the United States, the Netherlands, Europe, and all over Latin America.

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Other education that may be of interest to you:

Think Like an Entrepreneur - How to Be Profitable on a Sub EUR 1 Million Film in the European Market - With a Film Case Study

As an independent filmmaker or producer, you likely start working on a new endeavor for creative reasons—the chance to tell an amazing story, build worlds, create something of cultural value. Yet this is, of course, not the only element of filmmaking. Like it or not, your independent film is not just a creative endeavor; it’s also a business. You’re sourcing financing and bringing in investors, building a team, and creating a property that will (hopefully) ultimately make money not only in the present, but for years to come. In short, you’re not just a making a piece of art; you’re also running a business. To operate successfully in the world of independent film and continue to make films that you’re proud of, you need to be able to think like an entrepreneur and understand the dynamics and the relation between financing, distribution and recoupment of film investments. Further, you need to open up your creative mindset to the myriad opportunities available all over the world including hot markets found throughout Europe. The business side of films is often especially difficult for filmmakers and creative producers, but the more you understand, the better your chances of finding a production partner or investor to take your vision forward. Working in the European market, especially with films in the €1MM and sub€1MM range can offer you opportunities you haven't thought of before. But to take advantage of this surging market, you need to understand the variety of production and financing options available and how to tap into them. Whether it's hard money, soft money or other methods toward financing and securing the necessary pieces to greenlight your project, getting a handle on the in's and out's of how to proceed will put you in a powerful and advantageous position. Understanding and executing this business model will open new doors to other productions around the world and serve to create a portfolio of proof that will serve as a calling card moving forward.  David Zannoni is an international business specialist for Fintage House, the world's most respected company for revenue and rights protection for industry professionals and companies. David negotiates agreements for films and television series and is involved in business development and relationship management specifically in the US, Latin America and Europe. As an international film business specialist David is continuously present to make deals and speak at international film markets, festivals and conferences, including: the Cannes Film Festival, the European Film Market (EFM) in Berlin, the American Film Market (AFM), Ventana Sur, the Bogota Audiovisual Market (BAM), and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and travels regularly to the United States, the Netherlands, Europe, and all over Latin America. David is intimately familiar with how independent films are financed and made profitable all over the world and will share what he knows exclusively about the European market with the Stage 32 community. David will focus on the European market and walk you through what you need to know to finance your independent film, EUR1MM or less, and leave profitable. He will begin by explaining what a EUR1MM or under budget looks like, whether it’s considered a small film or microbudget, and how it compares in the larger worldwide film market. He’ll delve into how film financing works specifically in Europe, including a breakdown of soft money sources versus hard money sources, debt financing versus equity financing, tax and location incentives, and film funds and government support. He will also discuss working with a co-production as a financing tool. He will highlight how European film financing is different compared to other regions and the different levels of film financing to consider: European, national, and regional. David will next demonstrate the importance of language, culture, and collaboration and will then teach you what specifically Europe can offer for both European and non-European productions, including incentives, co-productions, diversity, talent, and shooting locations. He will explain how to approach your film as an asset, how to see yourself as an entrepreneur, and how to see filmmaking as a business. David will then go over the continental circle of financing, distribution, and investment recoupment and will explain how risk mitigation works for European film projects. Next he will discuss managing revenue and rights, as well as managing recoupment as a whole. He will spend time delving into European film contracts, including distribution agreements, CAM agreements, and sales agency agreements. David will ultimately illustrate whether European films can be profitable and how, and analyze with you when a European film can be considered successful, whether it breaks even or finds profitability. Plus, David will show a case study of a real EUR1MM European film to illustrate how a film of this level can be profitable and exactly how the money flows through from beginning to end. He’ll show financing documents and spreadsheets to illustrate the financing structure and demonstrate how money flows in and out. Through this detailed and practical demonstration, you will leave with strategies and a deep understanding of how to approach your own EUR1MM film as an entrepreneur and build a finance structure that will leave you and your investors profitable. This Stage 32 Webinar is Part 2 in David’s "Think Like an Entrepreneur" series. Click here to check out David’s webinar on being profitable in US marketplace with a sub-$1MM film. Praise for David's Previous Stage 32 Webinars: "David is incredible and lovely and clearly knows his stuff." - Cynthia P. "Eye-opening information. A no-brainer approach that wouldn't be so obvious to the uninitiated." - Gary O. "By far, the best class I've seen on the subject." Kirk K. "David is a fantastic teacher. And what a voice! I could listen to him all day. More importantly, I learned so very much!" - Isabella T.  

Understanding The Latin American Film Marketplace And How You Can Succeed In It

A New Exclusive Stage 32 Webinar! Learn how you can take advantage of the growing opportunities in Latin America in this webinar hosted by the international executive at Fintage House.    Since 2018 we’ve seen an explosion of filmmaking talent coming from Latin America. ROMA, from Mexico, took the world by storm when it emerged as a 3-time Oscar winner for best Director, best Cinematographer and Best Foreign Language Film of the Year, with 10 overall nominations. It came off of the heels of A FANTASTIC WOMAN from Chile, who also won Best Foreign Language Film of the Year and, ENCANTO from Columbia, which won best Animated Feature. This year 13 Latin American films were shortlisted for Oscar nominations, and of those films most were co-productions with other countries. There’s clearly something special happening in the Latin America film marketplace and it’s time you take advantage of it. If you have thought about working in Latin America, taking advantage of financial incentives to shoot there, or tapping into the talent in the area, now, exclusively through Stage 32, we’ll break down an overview of this region. You’ll learn about production, financing and distribution, as well as public policies and funding for film & TV production in Latin America. Not sure where to start? You’ll also learn the players in the area.  Guiding you on your Latin America journey is veteran Stage 32 Educator David Zannoni, the international consultant for Fintage House and the company’s representative in Latin America (among other areas), where he negotiates agreements for films and television series. He is heavily involved in business development and relationship management in the U.S., Latin America, and Spain. By the end of this webinar, you’ll have a strong knowledge of how Latin American entertainment works and how to jump into the vast opportunities with your project and get your project in front of audiences.   Praise for David's Previous Stage 32 Webinars: "David is incredible and lovely and clearly knows his stuff." -- Cynthia P. "Eye-opening information. A no-brainer approach that wouldn't be so obvious to the uninitiated." -- Gary O. "By far, the best class I've seen on the subject." -- Kirk K. "David is a fantastic teacher. More importantly, I learned so very much!" -- Isabella T.

How To Utilize Escrow Accounts To Finance Your Film

Learn how you can finance your project using escrow accounts from the international executive who was worked on financing and recoupment on hit films such as 1917, HONEY BOY, LATE NIGHT, HALLOWEEN ENDS, PLANE and more! PLUS! Receive a template of an escrow agreement + an example escrow transaction! Financing a film or television project is a notoriously risky investment. Even the most talented and seasoned creative teams are often hard-pressed to find funding for their projects because the financial success of a film or TV series can be difficult project.  However, there are steps you can take to mitigate the risk to your investors and make your project more attractive as an investment vehicle. One of the most powerful tools you have to quell investor anxiety is the use of escrow accounts for your investment funds. An escrow account is essentially a holding account for funds raised that only allows the funds to be dispersed once certain criteria are met. But how are these accounts used for film and television financing and how can they help you with your project? In this exclusive Stage 32 webinar, you will learn how escrow accounts for film projects work and why they are an essential tool in closing financial transactions such as funding physical production, closing deals with talent or licensing the finished product to distributors.  Teaching you all about escrow accounts is a veteran in the film financing and collecting account management space, David Zannoni. David has ben involved in escrow transactions for the past fifteen years, lately as North America consultant for Freeway Entertainment, a leading revenue solutions company that provides escrow, as well as collection account management and residual payroll. David has worked extensively as the representative for the Americas with Fintage House, who oversaw financing for recent successes such as PLANE, 1917, HONEY BOY, LATE NIGHT, HALLOWEEN ENDS, AFTERSUN, THE WOLF OF WALL STREET, RED ROCKET, and more! David will teach you how to set up an escrow account as well as the key parts of an escrow agreement and where and when to include escrow as a condition in contracts with production partners, financiers or others. PLUS! You will receive exclusive handouts to help in your escrow transactions. Downloads include: Escrow Agreement Template Escrow Transaction Example If you are looking to finance your film and/or television project and put your investors minds at ease, this webinar is a must! Praise for David's Previous Stage 32 Webinars: "David is incredible and lovely and clearly knows his stuff." -- Cynthia P. "Eye-opening information. A no-brainer approach that wouldn't be so obvious to the uninitiated." -- Gary O. "By far, the best class I've seen on the subject." -- Kirk K. "David is a fantastic teacher. More importantly, I learned so very much!" -- Isabella T.

The Spanish Film Industry for Foreign Producers

Spain attracts filmmakers from all over the world and has, especially, for the last decade, because of its popularity as a country for film production. Movies like MISSION IMPOSSIBLE II and FAST AND FURIOUS, as well as the series GAME OF THRONES and THE WITCHER, are just a few examples of productions shot in and around Spain. Not only is it brimming with talented actors and crew members, but the countryside alone is a candy store for creatives looking for beautiful locations and backdrops. Thanks to equally attractive tax incentives, a strong distribution base, and the presence of HBO and Netflix in the country, Spain is now on the map as an international film production hub.  If filming abroad has been on your mind, producing in Spain may be more cost effective than you initially thought. But if you’re not familiar with the production territory, tax incentives, or how to go about preparing for a production in a foreign country, you could be missing out on collaborative opportunities that can take your film further both financially and globally. Navigating requirements, rebates, and the foreign market can be intimidating. But international film production doesn’t have to be overwhelming when you have the right information at your fingertips. David Zannoni is an international business specialist and consultant for Fintage House in the US, Europe, Canada and Latin America territories, and knows what it takes to produce or co-produce in Spain. Fintage House is the world's most respected company for revenue and rights protection for industry professionals and companies. David makes deals and speaks at international film markets, festivals, and conferences, including: the Cannes Film Festival, the European Film Market (EFM) in Berlin, the American Film Market (AFM), Ventana Sur, the Bogota Audiovisual Market (BAM), and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and travels regularly to the United States, the Netherlands, Europe, and all over Latin America. David will enlighten you on the many benefits of shooting and distributing your film in Spain. David will kick off the 90 minute webinar by sharing his knowledge on the industry there, then moving attendees into the many benefits of shooting and distributing your product in Spain. Smaller, Independent films upwards to larger productions can benefit from foreign production shares. There are regional requirements and national requirements, and David will break those down with ease. He’ll also explain what co-producing in Spain means, and how it just might be the secret ingredient your production needs to be seen by other producers and distributors.    Praise for David's Previous Stage 32 Webinars: "David is incredible and lovely and clearly knows his stuff." - Cynthia P. "Eye-opening information. A no-brainer approach that wouldn't be so obvious to the uninitiated." - Gary O. "By far, the best class I've seen on the subject." Kirk K. "David is a fantastic teacher. And what a voice! I could listen to him all day. More importantly, I learned so very much!" - Isabella T.

Advanced Financing Webinar: How To Put Together A Recoupment Schedule For Your Film or TV Project

As creatives, we tend to focus on the writing, the directing, the creative producing, basically all the creating aspects of a film or television series. But it’s important to understand what happens after a film is released or TV series is aired. All those big box office numbers sound great, but who gets all that money and in what order? Who gets paid and in what order is called the “recoupment schedule” also known as “the waterfall.” It’s important to understand this schedule, so that you know your place in the waterfall. Some people may find the recoupment schedule confusing, because there are several factors and various agreements that go into determining the order of recoupment. Those includes sales agency agreements, co-production agreements, finance agreements, talent agreements, interparty agreements, security agreements, and collection account management agreements. Plus there’s the consideration of domestic and international revenue, and what gets allocated through the waterfall. But if your head is already spinning, fret not. With the right guidance, all of this will make much more sense and David Zannoni is the best at breaking this down. David Zannoni is an international business specialist for Fintage House in the US, Europe, Canada and Latin America territories. Fintage House, the world's most respected company for revenue and rights protection for industry professionals and companies. David negotiates agreements for films and television series and is involved in business development and relationship management globally on hundreds of productions. David is continuously present to make deals and speak at international film markets, festivals and conferences, including: the Cannes Film Festival, the European Film Market (EFM) in Berlin, the American Film Market (AFM), Ventana Sur, the Bogota Audiovisual Market (BAM), and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and travels regularly to the United States, the Netherlands, Europe, and all over Latin America. David is going to help you understand the ins and outs of a recoupment schedule and how to make sure you are on top of your finances for your own project. He will first go into what exactly a recoupment schedule looks like and what kind of projects they are normally used for. He will delve into the agreements that recoupment schedule is based on. He will also go into how the payments are executed, how to determine the order of payments, and which funds you should be allocating. You’ll walk away with a solid foundation and understanding of “the waterfall” and where you may fall in the waterfall.

The Importance of Recoupment Schedules for Your Film or TV Project and How to Put One Together

Producers and filmmakers of independent films and TV series deal with a multitude of parties regarding the production, financing and distribution of their films and projects. Many of these parties have a financial interest in the project and are entitled to a share of the revenues generated by domestic and international distribution of the film or series. In order to make the allocation and distribution of revenues manageable, it is important to design a recoupment schedule for your project. The recoupment schedule, also called “the waterfall”, combines all the single deal terms negotiated between the production and investors, financiers, talent, sales agents, co-producers, and service producers. Each project is unique, with its very own financing structure for example, and therefore there is no universal format for a recoupment schedule. However, there are certain guidelines to consider when putting together a recoupment schedule for your project. Understanding these guidelines will not only assure that there is no financial shadiness going on behind the scenes and no surprise lawsuits hanging out in the horizon. It also means that everyone who needs to get paid does get paid...and on time. And that can only raise your stature as someone who can deliver the goods and as a person people want to work with again and again. David Zannoni is consultant for Fintage House, the world's most respected company for revenue and rights protection for industry professionals and companies, and is the company's representative for the Americas. David negotiates agreements for films and television series, and he is involved in business development and relationship management specifically in the US, Latin America and Spain. David also runs a consultancy business through Xaman Ha Consulting and Zannoni Media Advisors, and has been focusing particularly on international service providers in the film and TV industries, and film and TV productions in Latin America, amongst others. As a film business specialist David is continuously present to make deals and speak at international film markets, festivals and conferences, including: the Cannes Film Festival, the European Film Market (EFM) in Berlin, the American Film Market (AFM), Ventana Sur, the Bogota Audiovisual Market (BAM), and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and travels regularly to the United States, the Netherlands, Spain, and all over Latin America. David will explain in easy to understand detail the world of recoupment schedules and why they are so important to your film or project. In an in depth, interactive presentation, David will discuss sources and allocation of film and TV revenues, the purpose of a recoupment schedule, the entitlements and obligations that are payable out of revenues, and the order and priority of payment for film and TV entitlements. He will discuss various territories around the world including distribution rights and assignments. He will show you which kind of projects use a recoupment schedule and the importance of a recoupment schedule as it relates to securing financing and attaching production partners.  David will take away all the guess work that goes into the world of waterfalls/recoupment schedules and simplify the entire process to assure everyone on your team is taken care of and given the sense of security they (and you) deserve! PRAISE FOR DAIVD'S TEACHINGS: "I went into this one expecting it to be dry as a bone in the sun. I was so wrong. David is incredible and lovely and clearly knows his stuff." - Cynthia P. "Eye-opening information. A no-brainer approach that wouldn't be so obvious to the uninitiated." - Gary O. "By far, the best class I've seen on the subject." Kirk K. "David is a fantastic teacher. And what a voice! I could listen to him all day. More importantly, I learned so very much!" - Isabella T.

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