Terminology Tuesday: Entertainment Lawyer

What exactly is an entertainment lawyer and… do you need one?⁠

Double-tap if you’ve ever looked over a deal memo or contract, only to think to yourself: 𝘴𝘩𝘰𝘶𝘭𝘥 𝘐 𝘩𝘢𝘷𝘦 𝘢 𝘭𝘢𝘸𝘺𝘦𝘳 𝘭𝘰𝘰𝘬 𝘢𝘵 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘣𝘦𝘧𝘰𝘳𝘦 𝘐 𝘴𝘪𝘨𝘯?⁠

Good thought. Complex answer. ⁠

An entertainment lawyer is — just that. A lawyer who specializes in deals pertaining to the entertainment industry. They are negotiating, detail-minded, fine-print-pros. ⁠

But first, let’s not forget: your agent is perfectly capable of handling most, if not all deals you’ll be up for. ⁠

An entertainment lawyer, however, has deeper knowledge of minute and potentially complex details that can effect your career and finances in a substantial way. ⁠

But at what cost?⁠

Most lawyers charge actors either an hourly rate or 5% of the final deal. ⁠

So when exactly is an entertainment lawyer necessary, if at all? Probably not for smaller roles (co-stars/small guest star arcs). And remember: your union has certain built-in protections already. ⁠

But if any of these apply, an entertainment lawyer might be worth looking in to:⁠

🔺 Series regular deals⁠
🔺 Mutiyear movie deals⁠
🔺 Commercial deals⁠
🔺 Pilot test offers⁠
🔺 Holding and/or option deals (especially when exclusivity is involved)⁠
🔺 Development deals⁠
🔺 Movie deals when getting paid Schedule F or higher⁠
🔺 When net or gross percentages are involved in backend deals⁠

Of course, you are welcome to hire a lawyer for any reason other than the ones listed above. At the end of the day, it’s a risk/money assessment. How much $$ are you willing to invest in for a potentially deal and for what size role?⁠

#themoreyouknow #thecastingdirectorscut #terminologytuesday

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