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Suggested Rate of Return for Investors

The Class A or Development Budget Investor is placed at extremely high risk. The development funds are spent immediately for items such as casting directors, legal fees, securities and other filing fees, pay-or-play deposits, etc.. Conversely, the Class B Investors' funds are generally deposited into a blocked escrow account until a defined minimum amount is raised. At that point, the escrow holder (usually a bank), will release these funds to the Producer. Therefore, I may suggest the following rates of return for the various Investors. Keep in mind that each situation may vary. The below constitutes a general "rule of thumb" scenario.

Class A Investors
Class A Investors are fully recouped from the first profits received by the entity (LLC, Limited Partnership, etc.) for amounts that they have invested, plus a 100% return on investment (r.o.i.) thereon. For example, if the Development Budget is in the amount of $400,000.00, the first $800,000.00 in profits received by the entity should be distributed to the Class A Investors.

Class B Investors
Once the Class A Investors have recouped their investment and have received a 100% return on investment (r.o.i.), the next profits received by the entity should be distributed to the Class B Investors, who have provided the production budget (or at least a part of it). I would further suggest a 20% return on investment (r.o.i.) to the Class B Investors. Therefore, if the Class B Investors have invested $1M (over and above the $400,000.00 invested by the Class A Investors), then the next $1.2M of profits should be distributed to the Class B Investors.

Therefore, under the above scenario, the first $2M received by the entity will recoup and provide a return on the investment for both the Class A and Class B Investors.

After all investors have been repaid and received their return on their investment, then any profits thereafter received by the entity, should be split 50/50 between the Producer and the Investors. The Class A and B Investors should share pro-rata in their 50% portion of the profits.

Any "back-end" contingent talent profit participation is customarily paid from the Producer's 50% share of the post recoupment/return on investment profits. The Investors' 50% share should not generally be used for talent profit participation.

The Producers will generally set their fees, as producers, within the Production or Development Budgets. However, the Producers should not take a fee for managing the entity (Limited Partnership, LLC, etc.).

Of course there are many variations to the above investment scenario, but this is the scenario that I might suggest to my clients, in order to make a film deal attractive to Investors.

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