Entertainment Finance

Gipson Hoffman & Pancione was one of the first law firms in Los Angeles to initiate a practice focusing on entertainment finance and has been a leader in the field since 1985.  GH&P has represented over twenty domestic and international banks, and numerous private funds and lenders in their entertainment lending activities and the acquisition of film and television libraries.  In addition, our firm has represented many independent entertainment companies in their business activities.  As a result of our representation of this broad group of clients in entertainment finance, the entertainment finance group has been involved in the financing of over 600 film and television projects.  Attorneys practicing entertainment finance include Larry Barnett, Fred Gaines, Ray Gross, and Bob Steinberg.

In its representation of banks and private funds and lenders in entertainment finance transactions, GH&P’s work has included documentation of single motion picture and television production and post production loans, bridge loans, and working capital revolving credit facilities.  The single-picture loan transactions include chain-of-title review, preparation of loan documentation, review of collateral such as distribution agreements, and the preparation of notices of assignment and interparty agreements, negotiation of completion guaranties and collection agreements.  The revolving credit facilities often consist of entertainment related receivables in a borrowing base and a production lending sub-facility.

Lending transactions often include the financing of tax incentives, so GH&P is familiar with many of the entertainment tax incentives offered throughout the world.  One of our attorneys is admitted to practice law in the United Kingdom, allowing the firm is also able to assist clients with finance matters abroad, including the taking of security interests and documenting and analyzing tax incentives.  The firm also represents borrowers in these types of finance transactions, including well capitalized producers and entertainment companies.
Our firm has represented many independent entertainment companies in all of their business activities since the firm was founded in 1982.  This representation has included the structuring, negotiation, and documentation of the raising of their initial capitalization; the formation of the entity and the preparation of the corporate governance documents; the negotiation and documentation of bank credit facilities (both revolving facilities and project loan facilities); the negotiation and documentation of production, finance, and distribution agreements with major studios and distributors; the negotiation of employment agreements for key executives; and assisting entertainment companies with real estate, labor, and employment matters.

GH&P has represented buyers of a number of film and television libraries, bringing to the transactions the firm’s capabilities in intellectual property, entertainment, corporate, finance, and insolvency law.  The firm’s expertise in copyright law is unique and extraordinarily useful to clients in these transactions.  Our leadership in both entertainment finance and insolvency is also useful to clients who become creditors in bankruptcy proceedings, as the firm is highly familiar with most of the issues that arise in these bankruptcy proceedings.

GH&P has represented many producers and investors in setting up investment vehicles for the production, finance, and distribution of individual motion picture and television projects.  For producers, such representation would include setting up the entity to hold the project and investment, preparation of all required documents and disclosures, negotiations with the investors, and all other entertainment and finance work required of the entity to produce and exploit the project.  For investors, the firm’s vast experience in both corporate matters and entertainment finance is available to assist in the structuring of the transaction, the negotiation of the governing documents for the entity, the due diligence required to assure that producers own the rights underlying the project, and planning a structure that protects the investor by incorporating a completion guaranty with a third party collection agent to assure that proceeds are paid to the appropriate parties.