Friday, January 29, 2016

Understanding Music Licensing

We wanted to utilize a song for Redeemed and wasn't sure where to start.  We knew that we had to have licensing of some sort, but what does that mean?  Where do we "acquire" the license?

After some research, I found out how some of this works.

Synchronization License is Getting the right to synchronize video content to the song.  This typically goes to the composer of the music.

When we spoke to the Publisher, we were told that there are different uses that would each need to be "asked" for.  Where given these use cases and prices...  This was for a very small film (in terms of budget) and a popular, but not megastar Christian artist.

  • Art House:  $250 for a couple of weeks
  • Streaming: $1,500 for a year
  • Film Festival: $1,500 for a year
  • In-House:  $1,500 for a year
Now, what is good in this case - for us - is that the song we are considering is covered by one publishing company and one service.  If there are multiple artists who wrote a song, they may belong to different Performing Rights Organizations.  These links may help someone determine who wants to own the synchronization rights to a song.


This does not give you the right to use a performance, just the song.  This is okay because we were planning on making our own recording.

The easy way to think about this to consider where does the money go.  When you use your own performance of a song, the money goes to the songwriter and that song writer's publisher  that is the Synchronization license.  When you use a performance of a song, you still have to pay the  Synchronization License, but you also have to pay for a master use right for the performance.  This money goes to the performer. 

To use a performance, we would had to get a master use license.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Film Auditions.

Surreal is the word that I would use to describe the auditions.  He we had several people come in to read our script.  All of them brought some interesting ideas to the table.

One of the most important things for me is that I heard the words that I have until that point only read.  I heard a lot of mistakes in my writing; where people stumbled or was confused.  I heard things that seemed very flat.  Very uninteresting.

I updated the script and heard other people read the new script.  It sounded so much better.  Still things to tweak.  Things to drop or enhance.  There is nothing like hearing and seeing it someone else interpretation of your words.

One individual read Manfred as an angry person.  And I didn't picture him that way.  I pictured him a bit more mild mannered.  More like me.  They say that when a writer writes his puts himself in Characters that he likes.  I'm sure that I did that.  But now that I hear the more angry interpretation, I think I like this better and it created a more 3-dimensional character in my mind.