We are a small production company that was recently asked by a longtime client to contact some composers to commission a piece of original music. We use stock music tracks only so this is not in our area of expertise. We got quotes, submitted them to our client with significant markup and to our surprise they agreed to buy one.
The reason the client commissioned the original track is so he can own the rights to the music in his spots, and collect PRO royalties when their stuff airs. It's becoming more and more common I understand. So the arrangement with the composer and the client is that all authorship and copyrights are granted to the client - for a cost of course. So all that done, there needs to be a Work Made For Hire (WMFH) agrement and a contract to set down the terms of the deal with each business.
Here's out predicament - we don't want the client to know the real cost of the track, nor do we want the composer to know the price at which we have sold it - however for copyright purposes the contract and WMFH agreement must be between the client and the composer - we are just putting them together.
Anyone have any suggestions as to how such a deal is executed and keep the profit factor confidential? All suggestions appreciated.
TnT Video Services, Inc.
Fort Lauderdale, FL
TRI EA5 1974-1977
Convergence ECS1B 1977-1979
Sony BVE 500 1979 - 1984
Datatron Vanguard 1984 - 1993
GVG VPE141 1993 - 1998
Media 100 1995 - 2006
Final Cut Pro 2005 to infinity and beyond!
Just on the surface, it seems to me that you need two separate agreements and contracts... and I think that would solve the problem.
First you buy the music from the composer, at whatever price you and the composer have agreed on. At that point, you are the rights holder.
Then, after some period of time (even if it's just ten minutes), then you sell those rights to the client... for whatever amount you choose.
Those become separate deals among completely independent parties, and it is irrelevant to the end client what you originally paid for the tracks. Well, they might like to know, but you are not required to tell them.
Much like buying a new suit in a retail shop. The end buyer is unlikely to know what the store paid for it, he only knows what the store is charging him.
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc. fantasticplastic.com