How To Write a Video Contract
If you’re involved with any kind of contract work, no matter what field you’re in, then an agreement is something you’re probably used to. On the other hand, maybe you’re new to being an entrepreneur, and you’re opening a new video production business for the first time - Then hopefully this will be helpful for you. Below we’ll outline what a typical video project contract looks like and bullet some of the things to keep in mind.
1. STATE THE PARTIES INVOLVED. When you’re drawing up your agreement make sure you state the two (or more) parties involved, their business address, and any other contact as well. You’re stating whom this agreement is between and on what date it happened.
2. THE PROJECT. The next part of your contact will state the video project you are about to work on. Be detailed. Spell out what the name of the project is, how long it’s going to be, etc. You can also add the total amount in the line also for a first time reference.
3. FORMAT, SCHEDULE, ELEMENTS. These next few sections of the agreement are often
their own line items where you list thing like the Format (HD, 4K, etc). Schedule (dates agreed by both parties that determine specific milestones), and Production Elements
(Personnel and supplies used for the upcoming production)
4. PRODUCTION BUDGETS AND FEES. This is where you can restate the TOTAL amount for the video production and list specifics on how that budget will be spent. This will also be
where you list specific payment dates (however you want to break it up) as well as penalties for late payments. So for example, we usually require 50% to get started and 50% at the end of a project. However, we have broken up very large budgets into three payments before.
5. OWNERSHIP. In this section is where you will state who the rights to the video and footage belongs to. You may work it out with your client that you will own the rights raw footage, but I’d say 90% of the time, they’ll get ownership because they’re paying for it. This is also where you can state that you, as the video production company, have the right to use this video piece in festivals or for promotional reasons.
6. LAST LEGAL SECTIONS. I’m sure you can get pretty detailed with legal jargon when it
comes to a contract. I do believe you need things like this to cover yourself, but you don’t
necessarily have to go overboard. Our contracts always end with these four sections:
7. SIGN AND DATE. When all parties have agreed to the verbiage of the contract, then both parties will sign and date the contract. (Make sure that the signee has the authority to sign such a document and also make a couple of copies for both parties).
And now you’re all set to get started on your video project legally! Hope this helps!