Entertainment Law Terms

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Adaptations: Derivative works. A motion picture is base on a book, the idea of the motion picture comes from a book.

ASCAP: The "American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers" is a non-profit performing rights organization. ASCP protects their members’ musical copyrights by supervising public performances of their music.

Completion Bond: A type of insurance, which guarantees financing to finish a motion picture in the event that the producer surpasses the budget. Completion bonds are sometimes necessary by banks and investors to secure loans and investments in a production. Should a bond be invoked, the completion guarantor may assume control over the production and be in a recoupment position superior to all investors.

SESAC: The Society of European Stage Authors & Composers founded in 1930 is the second oldest and the smallest performance rights organizations in the U.S.

Deferred Payment: When writers, directors, cast, crew or others agree to some or all of their payment later in order to decrease production costs. A deferred fee is generally paid from revenues created from a completed motion picture, and if a movie is not finished, or it does not produce considerable revenue, then the deferred payment holder may not be paid for his involvement.

Distributor: Companies that distribute films, placing within theaters and other media and promoting and advertising.

Double Distribution Fees: Happens when a distributor uses a sub-distributor to sell a motion picture. The filmmaker is less likely to make money, if more than one distributors are allowed to deduct their full fees.

Dubbing: In a recording process, adding additional sound to the visual presentation to create a sound track that can be transferred to and synchronized with the visual presentation.

Foreign Sales: Licensing a motion picture in various countries and media outside the U.S. and Canada.

Gross Receipts: Studio/distributor revenues resulting from all type of media, motion pictures, rentals, television and home video licenses, merchandising and ancillary sales.

Joint Venture: An agreement between two or more parties to form a new entity where all parties share revenues, expenses, resources, loses and control of the new entity.

Licensee: A person who is granted a license or permission to do something.

Licensor: Formal permission from a governmental or other authority to do business or a profession.

Limited Partnership: Two or more person, with at least on limited partner and general partner. General partners have power over the partnership; limited partners have no control, no legal or financial liabilities beyond the amount they have invested.

Master: The final copy from the edited motion picture or videotape.

Merchandising Rights: Who owns the right to, manufacture and distribute merchandise based on characters, names or events in a picture.

NTSC: Established in 1940 by the FCC, National Television System Committee is the analog television system used mostly in countries from North and South America.

Original: A unique work that has not been taken from another work.

Right of Privacy: The right to keep personal affairs out of public views, and to be protected against a range of intrusive behavior such as misappropriation of one’s name, image or likeness.

Right of Publicity: The ability to control the commercial value and use of one’s likeness, image, and name.

Talent: The word to describe a special natural ability or aptitude.

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