Film Networking Event Malibu, CA

Ain't Worth The Paper It's Written On

Contracts can be wonderfully gracious, grating, glorious, and grateful. They can be fantastically positive, possessive, and pessimistic. They can be positively obscure, obfuscating, and obstinate. (God, those "O" words are obtuse, are they not?)

A contract will always seek to anticipate all fears, project all fears, protect all fears, and allay all fears . The contract itself may succeed, but the people often as not, do not.

If you are a producer, whether new or a veteran, there are wonderful websites, such as Mark Litvak's that will take you step by step through issues you may never have thought of or dealt with. He's respected throughout the industry, so read up.

If you're working your way through distribution, there are sites listed on my previous blogs that will give you the details you need.

But I suppose the reason my fingers are flying at the moment is because of the title you clicked on...

I think the most important piece of advice I can give anyone in any business is to keep your mind open, let your gut help you decide on whom you wish to deal with, and do not question your gut if there is a question or concern about someone. In the film or entertainment business, your gut is even more important than any other business.


Because in the entertainment business you are creating stories, illusions. Your job as a producer is getting people to pay for them, whether they're your investors or your intended audience, or for that matter, your cast, talent, crew, vendors, locations, whatever. Why? Because our stories can change people's lives. Cynics don't believe this, but the audience does.

Everyone has a great story to tell. Almost always, everyone's stories are compelling, heartbreaking, uplifting, important. So everyone's a critic, and a potential hazard on the long road to Oz.

Ups and downs are part of the sacrifice we make as storytellers.

People reject contracts they've signed and sue over their shortcomings as producers/negotiators. People will make up new rules late in the "game". People will be accommodating one minute and obstinate the next, on points that are initialed in a contract, depending on their state of mind, that day, that part of the night, or that part of a drink. Within the same conversation they will agree with your most carefully crafted arguments and forget they ever did.

What's the solution? Pick your friends well. It's the most important thing in life too.

Wading through all the detritus is worth it. Because on the other side, you meet really amazing people.

If you're in town, come to my party and let's tell each other stories.

Juri Koll
March 18

More Than Kin, LLC
+1 310-957-7037
[email protected]
[email protected]
Skype: basslinefilms


Juri Koll has produced and/or production managed award winning features such as Until The Music Ends, American Cowslip, Burning Man 3D, Hardcore Hearts, The Truth About Kerry , That Game of Chess, and NekroBeach, which he directed. These and other films have included Oscar winning and nominated cast such as Bruce Dern, Rip Torn, Diane Ladd, Peter Falk, Cloris Leachman, Karen Black, and supremely talented actors such as Stana Katic, and Lynn Shaye, and Val Kilmer. Mr. Koll has directed and/or produced well over 40 short films and music videos. His films have been screened all over the world and in over 70 festivals, winning many awards.

After graduating from Cal Arts, he founded Art/World Productions, he made documentaries on artists as diverse as Titian, The Fauves (Wild Beasts), and Venice Beach graffiti artists. He worked with major museums and galleries including The National Gallery of Art, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. His work, seen on NBC, CBS, ABC, and PBS affiliates, are also in university libraries and private collections across the U.S. Recently, his first documentary, In The Steel: A Portrait of Mark di Suvero, (1991) was elected to be part of the Archives of American Art at the Smithsonian Institution.




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