This year’s Cannes Film Festival will soon be drawing to a close. However, the effects of the festival will almost certainly be felt for months and even years to come. Whether a film generates a positive or negative response at this particular festival can make or break its chances of being distributed, of being embraced by the public and of making a significant profit. In addition, the buzz that certain performances and creative work receive at this festival can help to make or break careers.
It is worth noting that while acting performances and films generally tend to receive the most media coverage in the wake of the festival, non-actors and non-studios may benefit tremendously from festival-related coverage. For example, many writers and directors may be encouraged to sign representation agreements if their work generates a great deal of discussion at the Cannes Film Festival and other festivals like it.
Representation agreements can help to ensure that actors, writers, directors and other creative professionals in Hollywood are both given numerous opportunities within the industry and are granted proper compensation for their work. What about the work that they produce?
A screen-play, a soundtrack or any other creative work is considered intellectual property. It matters both how the content itself is used and distributed as well as how the resulting profits are handled. If your creative work is generating buzz this festival season and you have not yet sought out the assistance of an attorney, it may be time to do so.
Source: Hollywood Reporter, “Cannes: Power Agents Go Shopping for Directors,” Scott Roxborough, May 17, 2014