How to Avoid Legal Pitfalls on Your Indie Film with Entertainment Lawyer Walter B. Batt
If paperwork, contacts and E&O Insurance was as sexy as a new 8K camera then filmmaker would never get into legal trouble when making their film. Alas it is not sexy and filmmakers, myself included, hate even thinking about that side of the business. One thing I’ve learned over the years is if you don’t understand the business side of “show business” you will get burned.
Filmmakers ask me legal advice all the time, why I have no idea, and I always say you should speak to an attorney and cover your butt. I’ve been wanting to have an attorney on the show for a while now to answer not only your legal questions but mine as well. Today’s guest is entertainment lawyer Walter B. Batt Attorney at Law.
Here’s a bit about today’s guest: Walter Batt is an Entertainment Lawyer located in Los Angeles, California. Mr. Batt is a graduate of Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Science in International Business and a Juris Doctor from the University of Miami-Coral Gables. Licensed in Florida and California, his boutique practice focuses, negotiation and contract development in addition to production support for films. With experience in myriad areas of entertainment and general business, Mr. Batt’s client base is diverse consisting of actors, production companies, public relations and marketing agencies, entrepreneurs, and distilled spirits manufacturing and distribution. As a former prosecutor, Mr. Batt occasionally represents selective clients in litigation matters, when required. As an avid exercise guy, Mr. Batt enjoys the gym in addition to films, friends and most of all his best clients–his dogs.
Here are some of the filmmaking legal pitfalls we discuss:
- Can you shoot without a permit on the street?
- Can you use a corporate logo in your film without permission?
- What is the truth behind using logos in an indie film?
- Can you shoot in front of a business with a logo and use it without permission?
- Do you need to form a company to make a film?
- Is it necessary to obtain a release from everyone whose face appears on camera?
- How do I check whether my movie name is available?
- How do I prepare a prospectus and/or investor memorandum for my film?
- What type of insurance should a filmmaker consider?
- What’s the deal with referring to copyright/trademarked material in a script?
- How do I copyright my script?
- What are some good filmmaking legal resources are out there?
- When should you begin to work with an entertainment attorney?
If you are making a feature, short, web series, streaming show or any content you plan to sell then this podcast is mandatory.
Enjoy my conversation with entertainment lawyer Walter B. Batt.
LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE
- Hollywood Film & Television Directing Masterclass (EXCLUSIVE 50% OFF)
- Directing Actors Master Course – (30% OFF – CODE: HUSTLE)
- Hollywood Camera Work: Mastering High-End Blocking and Staging (30% OFF – CODE: HUSTLE)
- Werner Herzog’s Filmmaking MasterClass
- Aaron Sorkin Screenwriting Master Class
- FreeFilmBook.com (Download Your FREE Filmmaking Audio Book)
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Thanks to Josh for dropping some knowledge bombs. Until next time!
- How to Become a Working Director MasterClass
- Filmmaking Hacks: Filmmaking Master Course
- Directing Actors Film Workshop
- USC Film School’s ONLY Online Course: Directing the Actor
- Film Lighting MasterClass
- Recording Sound for Indie Film
- The Art of Micro-Budget Filmmaking
- Cinematography MasterClass
- Film Festival Hacks: Submit Like a Pro
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Stuff You Need in Your Life:
IFHTV: Indie Film Hustle TV
Book: Rise of the Filmtrepreneur®: How to Turn Your Indie Film into a Moneymaking Business
Book: Shooting for the Mob (Based on the Incredible True Filmmaking Story)
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