Monthly Archives: February 2013

What is an “Accredited Investor”? Why you should care.

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 If you're setting up financing for your next film, theatre, or new media production, and you're planning to talk to potential investors, you need to know the rules.  Whenever a company sells investment opportunities, in which the investors will be ‘passive', not taking any meaningful role in the management of the business, the transaction involves the offering and sale of the company's securities.

Securities Registration and Exemptions

Under the Securities Act of 1933, a company that offers or sells its securities must either: (1) register the securities with the SEC, or; (2) conduct the transaction under an exemption from the registration requirements.

Since registration is a colossally time consuming and expensive process, it is best left to larger financing projects;  those in the tens- or hundreds-of millions of dollars, such as the IPO's we typically hear about and other transactions involving publicly-traded securities. Most low- and mid-budget motion pictures, plays, musicals and media productions simply can't afford the time or money involved with a registered, public securities offering.  So, the exemptions become important.

The Act provides companies with a number of exemptions.   The most commonly recommended by lawyers for entertainment projects  arise under the SEC's Regulation D.   For some of the exemptions, such as rules 505 and506 of a company may sell its securities to what are known as “accredited investors.”

What is an Accredited Investor?

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Entertainment Law Update Podcast Episode 38

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In this Episode:

  • Subway's footlong subs aren't
  • Bikram yoga isn't too hot on court ruling
  • Soundalikes strike dissonant chord for the Black Keys
  • Podcast Patent lawsuit
  • Batmobile is a character, not just a prop,
  • and more…

 

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Front Money – what it is, how it works

Front Money – what it is, how it works.

What is Front Money?

Front money, or Seed money, as it is often called, is a common first round of capital for a start-up businesses, including many independent films and theatrical projects. It gets its name from the idea that early stage financing plants the seed that enables a small business to grow.

Obtaining funding is one of the most critical aspects of getting your project on the track to production. In fact, many projects fail or are prevented from even starting due to a lack of capital. Although obtaining financing can be difficult for any small business, it is particularly hard for new entertainment ventures. Since these ventures lack a track record, potential lenders and investors are often skeptical about their prospects for success. Nonetheless, the persistent would-be producer, if armed with a sound business plan and the necessary skills, can usually obtain funding for his/her project eventually.

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Entertainment Industry Insights Podcast, Episode 001: Adam Leipzig

 Entertainment Industry Insights Podcast Annnouncing a new occasional podcast featuring interviews with Entertainment Industry Thought Leaders. In this episode, I talked to former Disney executive and National Geographic Films President Adam Leipzig about his new book, upcoming workshop, and his views on the state of the independent film business.     Continue Reading

Asked and Answered: Can I use old time radio recordings in my play?

Steven asks about the use of old-time radio recordings as part of his new play. My answer may surprise you! AUDIO: This is intended as general information only and does not establish an attorney-client relationship. It is not a substitute for a private, independent consultation with an attorney selected to advise you after a full… Continue Reading

Why people invest in entertainment

Every week, I speak with producers developing their film or theatrical projects who struggle with the big challenge: finding the financing. In many cases, they’ve come to me as an entertainment lawyer, thinking I have the magic solution. Sadly, I don’t. In fact, most film and theatrical attorneys steer clear of helping clients find the… Continue Reading

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