“Harbottle & Lewis has a ‘long-standing reputation as a destination of choice for media and entertainment clients”

Chambers UK

Our film lawyers advise clients on the entire lifecycle of a film. During development we help producers to investigate and secure the rights needed to successfully produce their project and can handle complex chain of title issues as well as straight screenplay commissions and rights options. We also act for publishers, authors and other rights holders, providing commercial as well as legal advice in helping them to exploit film rights in a given property.

We guide producers, as well as lenders, banks and financiers, through the process of film financing, providing prompt, commercial and pragmatic advice. As front runners in this field we also have dedicated specialists who can advise on co-productions, EIS and SEIS schemes and the film tax credit. Please see the media finance page of our website for further details.

We take a production counsel role on films of all sizes. We act for major US studios, such as Universal and DreamWorks Studios (now Amblin Partners) and for independent producers, on their UK films as well as many of those being shot in Europe. In addition, we advise high profile talent (including actors, directors and individual producers) in negotiating deals for their involvement in film projects.

We have decades of experience in negotiating with sales agents, distributors and other licensees and can advise on any number of licensing arrangements including straight distribution deals, OTT/digital distribution and merchandising. With separate theatre, publishing, music, interactive entertainment and tech teams, we are also uniquely placed to advise clients on converting their film properties into a proper franchise.

Latest viewpoints