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Book into Game > Contract Highlights - Pg. 234

Licensing 234 following September or January) and agree to terminate the agreement if they don't receive any offers within three to six months of the last pitch. Example: If the licensor and licensee are contracting in September 2003, they should be able to have pitch materials together for the 2004 pitch season. If they have not received any offers by October 15, 2004, the contract terminates. · Production. Production rights should persist as long as the producer is releasing a threshold number of new episodes per year (between 8 and 13). · Distribution and Exhibition. The producer should have the right to distribute and exhibit the productions in perpetuity. Other Terms · Territory. The territory is almost guaranteed to be worldwide. · Creative and Business Approvals. The licensor will want to have an approval or consultation right over all major business decisions like choice of broadcaster or international distributor, as well as creative elements such as treatments, scripts, weapons, vehicles, artwork, sets, and backgrounds. · IP Registration and Enforcement. Unless the licensor is very experienced with international intellectual property registration and enforcement, the producer may want to take responsibility for registering the property in the licensor's name (or co-owned with the licensor, as the case may be) and recouping those costs. · Ownership of New Material. The licensor is likely to co-own the copyrights to any derivative works created by the producer, though the producer may own all the rights to certain aspects of the production, such as the theme song. Book into Game This section addresses your licensing someone else's property for your own purposes, such as turning a book into a game or other media. Cast of Characters · Licensor. Usually the author, possibly the publisher. · Licensee. Developer. Mis en Scène The art lead at Developer is a huge sci-fi fan and thinks that an obscure novella he read would make a great game. He draws up some illustrations of his idea and discusses it with one of the level designers, who brainstorms some gameplay ideas. They present their ideas to the CEO, who agrees to approach the author about a low-cost license to the property. The CEO contacts the author, who is intrigued by the idea of the game, and agrees to send the CEO's attorney a copy of the author's publishing contract so that he can check for any rights conflicts with the publisher. Everything looks good, so the parties proceed with the negotiation. Contract Highlights Because these contracts frequently have a low dollar amount attached, be sure that the detail and cost of negotiation is in proportion to the contract. In other words, it may not always make sense to spend $10K negotiating a contract for a $500 license.