A pay or play contract specifies that money will be paid to a person
regardless of whether or not their services are used. They are common
in the entertainment industry and a common example is for an actor
to be given a pay or play contract to appear in a movie. (http://www.123exp-fun.com/t/01151272602/)
- PFD Deal
Produce, Finance and Distribute Deal:
Making a movie
- Optioning a book
Terms and Concepts from Lost in La Mancha
- Producer (Rene Cleitman)
- Financing of Preproductoin
- Financier backing-off
- Scaling back of Budget (from $40m to $32.1m)
- Main Talent/Primary cast
- Scene planning
- Line Producer (Jose Luis Escolar) (note that he's Spanish -- probably
convenient given the location of principal photography)
- Director of Photography (Nicola Pecorini)
- Director (Terry Gilliam)
- Writer (Terry Gilliam)
- First Assistant Director (Phil Patterson): one of his functions
is to set the schedule to match the budget.
- Assistant Set Director (Barbara Perez-Solero)
- Production Designer (Benjamin Fernandez)
- Artistic Reputation (of director)
- Financial Reputation (of director; his ability to keep to the budget)
- Scaling back of production
- Actors' schedules
- Costume Designer (Gabriella Pescucci)
- Co-costume Designer (Carlo Poggioli)
- Executive Producer (Bernard Bouix)
- Screen test: a method of determining the suitability of an actor
or actress for performing on film and/or in a particular role. The
performer is generally given a scene, or selected lines and actions,
and instructed to perform in front of a camera to see if they are
- Issues with the use of animals -- for example, cruelty to animals;
- The contract with Vanessa has still not been signed, even though
a picture deal has been done.
- Picture deal
- Incomplete contracts
- Soundstage -- a studio for interior scenes
- Safety issues -- there are small actors who are going to (bungee)
jump from a height
- insurance of the cast
- Shooting is usually out of sequence
- Several takes are necessary for one scene
- Unpredictability e.g. around the 46th minute, we learn that some
of the actors have not been given a chance to rehearse their lines;
we see airplanes zooming above and making a ruckus -- the AD thought
that they would be around only for one hour in the day.
- Post-production; some scenes are shot in spite of the sound of the
airplanes -- that noise is going to be removed in post-production.
- Some of the background scenes are shot, in order not to lose the
entire day -- unplanned shooting.
- More unpredictability -- the weather is very rainy and windy
- equipment insurance
- completion guarantee
- Need for a flexible schedule
- Damage to equipment is covered by insurance
- Loss due to lost shooting time is not covered by insurance -- this
was due to the storm, which is considered an act of God.
- The producers replace the first AD; we see that the producers have
control, not the director
- Investors coming to visit the set (sixty of them representing $16m.
- Insurance adjuster
- The insurance company is going to decide how to proceed -- the insurance
company has control at this point.
- Completion Guarantor (Fred Milstein): guarantees completion on schedule
- Force Majeure: a clause which allows producers to end contracts
in extraordinary circumstances. In the case of Lost in La Mancha,
the question is raised as to whether Rochefort's illness qualifies
as Force Majeure or not -- the AD says later that they should have
used the force majeure class to stop the shooting when Rochefort got
When Heath Ledger died (on Jan. 22, 2008), he had just finished filming
in London on Terry Gilliam's movie The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus.
One hundred crew members were laid off using the force majeure class
and production was suspended.
- Contract definition -- the definition of force majeure in the insurance
contract seems to be missing or ambiguous; unclear as to whether Jean
Rochefort's illness could be considered force majeure.
- If the shooting stops, interest costs (on the money advanced by
the studio) accumulate.
- Essential elements: Tony Gilliam, Johnny Depp and Jean Rochefort;
if any one of the essential elements is not available, the financiers
can back off.
- Sunk costs: production and pre-production costs
- Film abandonment
- Insurance company owns the right to the movie.
- New investors on the scene, planning to buy back the script from
the insurance company and attempt to remake the film.
Questions on Lost in La Mancha
- Why is Jean Rochefort being given a screen test so close to the
beginning of principal photography? What is the purpose? Would he
have been let go from the production if his screen test was negative?
Financing is already contingent upon using him for the main part.
In fact, that's why the film had to be stopped -- he was not available
after a week of shooting because of his medical problems!
- Why are the principal actors willing to take a smaller pay for the
- Who paid for Rochefort's English lessons? (Presumably the producer?)
- How are the producer and the directors compensated?
- What is a picture deal? How is it different from a regular contract
- Why are the investors on the set?