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How much to charge to license short?

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Eric Chamberlain
How much to charge to license short?
on Feb 19, 2015 at 3:07:35 am

I have a question if you do not mind. A national cable TV channel has asked to license a short film I made specifically for them. It is a 20-second spot they want to use for promos. There is also interest in having me produce more of these shorts. Do you have any idea how much to charge for such a license?


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Mads Nybo Jørgensen
Re: How much to charge to license short?
on Feb 19, 2015 at 11:15:11 am

Hey Eric,

Congratulations, what a great situation to be in.

[Eric Chamberlain] " A national cable TV channel has asked to license a short film I made specifically for them."

Did they pay you for the short upfront, or did you make it without their input, and then submitted it?

In advertising you used to be able to get paid per showing, those days have mostly gone, unless you are a big time actor/actress with pulling power.

Calculate out your costs for the production. Times that by 2 = the minimum that you should charge. It really comes down to how badly the channel wants your short?

Another option is to offer it to them free of charge in return for a contract for ordering 10 more shorts. I.e. you give them a discount and in return secure future work that may keep you happy for a few months + publishing all those shorts should help your portfolio big time.

ONE BIG word of WARNING:
Normally shorts are made up of loads of people working for free in return for show-reel footage and/or experience. When doing the license, do you have all of your releases in place? Including agreements with any music composer and DOP? You may be happy with the money from the National Cable channel, they may not, which could sink you before you even got out of bed.
Also, if you have created the music yourself make sure to register it, as you could earn royalties every time it is played on the channel - this alone could under the right circumstances make you consider paying the channel for taking your short... :-)

Hope this helps.

All the Best
Mads

@madsvid, London, UK
Check out my other hangouts:
Twitter: @madsvid
http://mads-thinkingoutloud.blogspot.co.uk


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Mark Suszko
Re: How much to charge to license short?
on Feb 19, 2015 at 1:23:56 pm

Also make sure the language in the deal eventually returns all rights to you.


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Eric Chamberlain
Re: How much to charge to license short?
on Feb 19, 2015 at 7:43:30 pm

Mark, thank you for that insight.

Eric


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Eric Chamberlain
Re: How much to charge to license short?
on Feb 19, 2015 at 7:42:41 pm

Mads,

Thank you for this great advice! It is indeed very helpful.

Eric


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