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Taking Care of Business
The pen and paper aspects of DV -- put it in writing!

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Old May 27th, 2004, 07:40 AM   #16
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I am working with a lawyer and have been for a week. Just feel my problem will be of help to others.
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Old May 27th, 2004, 11:08 AM   #17
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Then he should have told you to stop making public comments about this that he doesn't screen, since everything you say can potentially be used against you in court.
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Old May 28th, 2004, 02:16 PM   #18
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Yeah, what Peter said.
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Old May 28th, 2004, 03:28 PM   #19
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Too bad Rich you and this person are on such ill terms. You could both help each other out. He could consent you making the documentary and you could authorise he use some of your material in court.
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Old May 28th, 2004, 04:35 PM   #20
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having just been screwed out of some dough by an agency that went out of biz. I can reiterate what I've learned.

1. get 1/2 up front

2. get it / send it in writing

I just cut a Sprite trends video that was just a horror show from start to finish and since I had not updated my rates ended up taking the job at last years rates... foster an 8 year client relationship... yadda yadda. But at 6am with problems on top of problems I felt pretty angry.
The next biz day I recontacted their buyers and got my updated rates/info out first thing. and while I could have tried to bill them time and a half for 8 of the 20 hours straight I didn't as I didn't communicate that upfront.

think transparency or ask and you shall (more often than not) receive. Just not after the fact...

Since you're not seeing diddly from this and this dude is suing to try and get something out of it isn't it in your interest to oblige and hope he get some dough? Then you could sue him for services rendered if he won't pay you for work you are owed.
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Old May 28th, 2004, 09:40 PM   #21
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POINT 1) Could he put a watermark on the film?

POINT 2) Without anything in writing, Rich's version of the verbal contract is as good as his "partners" verbal contract. All has to be hashed out in a legal forum. The court, possibly jury, should lean a little toward Rich's side because 1) he obviously did a lot of work. 2) he obviously hasn't been paid for the work. Judges and juries, for the most part, don't like people being run over by a shyster regardless.

I sat on the jury of a case involving 1/2 million dollar lawsuit. Similar circumstance. No written contract. Some warning though. . . be careful how you stress the word "Partner". If you were "Partners" you could get deeper into this.

If you don't do anything else, take everyones advice and at least talk to a lawyer.
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Old May 28th, 2004, 09:55 PM   #22
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No offense intended, but Paul and Peter are attorneys and their advice should be heeded.
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Old May 31st, 2004, 06:51 AM   #23
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"Young" concert promoter + spoken contract + change of heart that kills the project = Guy who wants to snooker your footage away from you for his own purpose.

Yes I would retain an attorney to protect the value of your footage. Tell the attorney ALL the details of the case. Wait for further progress on the matter and start editing your footage into whatever you want to do with it.

Call it a gut feeling based on past experiences... but "70 million" is a dazzling number... What is the REAL value of the issue? Was it the Rolling Stones that you were making a documentary about? I think this is another case of somebody wanting to cut and run with your footage... If you hand it over this guy will probably dissappear... hoping to produce his own work from YOUR work... and cutting you out of the equation.

Locally here in St. Louis I've seen it happen time and time again. People get asked onto a project and devote WEEKS to something for a given compensation... THEN the guy who swindled everybody dissappears right at the end. Of course with everybody's footage and hard work. There was a vampire movie shot at Laclede's Landing... months and suddenly POOF! Gone. There was a feature shot in Defiance, MO... not too far away... MONTHS of "when this is done you'll get...." POOF! Gone.

Fortunately in my own experience this has been rare... but it has happened to me once...

To me this sounds like one of those deals. Of course I could be wrong and maybe I'm trivializing the issue... but again, 70 MILLION?... Hmm.
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Old June 18th, 2004, 09:11 PM   #24
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It was a big time two day festival starring Radiohead. I know he doesn't want it for anything elese than the lawsuit, but he's palying hardball and soon so will my lawyers.
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