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This no-nonsense reference helps independent filmmakers recognize and solve the critical legal issues they might face throughout the course of making a film.

Author Thomas A. Crowell, TV producer turned entertainment lawyer, will help you to understand and negotiate crucial production contracts, handle actors and their agents, and navigate the perils of copyright infringement and other lawsuits. Updated throughout to address important changes to the law, and incorporating discussion of online distribution, crowdfunding, social media marketing, and international productions, this expanded third edition will provide you with the skills to:

  • Protect the copyright to your work.
  • Finance your film and watch out for common financing traps.
  • Understand how tax credits and other incentives are used in film financing.
  • Work with other screenwriters, and protect your script ideas.
  • Adapt a book or comic into a screenplay.
  • Know how to spot the difference between copyright infringement and fair use.
  • Hire crew members, actors, and post-production staff.
  • Draft a production services agreement or a license to use someone else's work.
  • License music for soundtracks.
  • Negotiate a distribution agreement or understand how to distribute your film alone.
  • Learn how to best position your film for Netflix.
  • Make money from YouTube.

And much more!

Written for accessibility and ease of reference, this book is a vital resource for any student or independent filmmaker wanting their films to be successful and free of legal disasters.