Legal & Business Affairs in TV
Industry Media acts for some of the UK’s leading producers in all genres, and we are proud of our reputation for commercial sense, deep expertise and reliable delivery.
Industry provides business and commercial affairs advice for creators of content. We think of ourselves as your external in-house counsel providing clear and practical solutions to problems, and pride ourselves on helping you grow your business while making the most out of every opportunity that presents itself. Our collective expertise covers every aspect of television production and exploitation, and we are dedicated to putting that expertise at your disposal.
We understand the unique nature of the kids and animation film and television business, and we bring to the table our wealth of experience in putting together financing structures (which are never quite the same), often with overseas and several partners all looking for the best position possible.
We ensure that the production can be financed whilst rights and revenue streams are maximised for our clients, and we focus on the long term picture in which the project will unfold, including ancillary exploitation such as apps, music, print publishing and merchandising.
We very much enjoy our unusual file names in this hugely creative and ever evolving environment. We understand that the deal needs to be flexible to encompass the creative journey that the television programme may initiate, from feature film to live shows (and we look after those too!).
Industry has specialised in Comedy since 2004. As well as extensive experience in dealing with the BBC and ITV, Industry has unique experience with Sky, acting on 6 of Sky’s first 8 comedy commissions, including Gates”, “Hunderby”, “Moone Boy”, “Starlings”, “Stella” and “The Cafe”.
We are very well versed in dovetailing broadcast and distribution finance, a practice which is increasingly more commonplace in the industry, and we have therefore developed an established course of dealing with many common financiers which leads to quick and effective deals for our clients.
Over the years, we have also received regular instructions from agencies whose comedy writer / performer clients operate production companies and this has resulted in us advising Alexander Armstrong, Ben Miller, Chris Tarrant, John Cleese, Paul Whitehouse, Rob Brydon, Ruth Jones, Steve Delaney (aka Count Arthur Strong), Victoria Wood and many up and coming comedy talents.
We work closely with the agent and usually act for the Talent’s production company leaving the primary talent relationship to the agency.
“I trust them implicitly – they’ve ‘been there and done it’ and know all the tricks!”
Industry was set up in 2004 to provide a proactive business affairs service to independent film and television producers and, over the last 9 years, our TV Drama team has been instructed by some of the UK’s most successful producers of TV Drama including All3Media, BBCW, Clerkenwell, Kudos, Left Bank, Mammoth, Noho, Red Planet, Ruby, Sally Head, Shed & Sony.
In the last 3 years alone, we have acted for more than 40 TV Drama production companies on more than 40 deals with the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Sky – and counting.
This level of deal flow has given us a unique level of know how and insight into the film and TV Drama genre and, in the vast majority of cases, we have been involved in every aspect of the development, financing, production, distribution and exploitation of these film and television programmes and their associated rights. Indeed, finding production finance for our clients has been one of the skillsets that has persuaded production companies to use Industry.
From shiny-floor Saturday night specials to drama entertainment and features, we have the expertise in Entertainment you need to make the most of your idea.
We understand how important it is to get it right from the very start and we can help you structure the deal to your best advantage. From there, we can take care of everything: format agreements, development agreements, production agreements, contributor/contestant agreements, talent agreements and everything in between.
If you have a show which can support ancillary products and services, we can help you develop a strategy to roll them out, and then we do the agreements you need to make the most out of your opportunity.
We are a one stop shop from the first inkling of an idea all the way to a product on the shelf at retail, and we love to help our clients realise their ambitions.
We act for producers across the whole spectrum of factual programming, from sensitive single documentaries relying on delicate access, through to the world of formatted factual which blends close to entertainment.
In all cases, we understand the importance of ensuring the business affairs facilitates the production and doesn’t get in the way of it. We offer practical solutions to problems – frequently needed against a tight deadline – and we ensure that all of the agreements you need to make your programme happen are clear, and conducted with integrity and speed.
Before the production starts, we can help you work out a deal structure that will help you realise your ambitions from the project, and after the production ends, we can work with you on your distribution plans to ensure that you see as much value as you can from your labours.
We understand the challenges of feature film development, financing, production and distribution. We have significant experience (both in-house and private practice) of taking projects from script to screen in the UK and overseas.
We help to put together financing structures often with several (not immediately compatible) partners all looking for the best position possible.
We represent leading production companies, international distributors, structured and equity financiers as well as individual writers, directors, producers and actors.
We ensure that the feature film can be financed whilst rights and revenue streams are maximised for our clients, including ancillary exploitation such as music, print publishing and merchandising.
Sara’s appointment as Industry’s managing director in November 2013 signalled a strategic move into movies for the James Grant Group-owned consultancy. Prior, Sara ran her own media law firm for 11 years and has now merged her business into Industry. Sara has worked in the film and television industry for 20 years. The most recent films she has represented include Sunshine on Leith and Le Week-end. Her recent television work includes Babylon directed by Danny Boyle for C4 and Fleming, starring Dominic Cooper, for Sky.
Sources say Sara is “extremely cost effective and her skill at cutting through to the necessary is always appreciated”, “Sara is very experienced. She works with people like Kevin Loader, Nigel Green, Douglas Rae…she really does know what she’s doing. And doesn’t charge the earth”.
Having qualified as a solicitor in 1999, Nikki has worked both in private practice and in-house and has strong technical expertise and commercial awareness.
Nikki specialises in television related advice covering all areas from development to finance to production and clearance to distribution. Nikki also has a strong client base in live event and theatre which is complemented by her sound knowledge of music matters.
Nikki enjoys advising on intellectual property and contract law and working hard for clients to add real value to their deals.
Nikki graduated from Westminster University in Law with an LLB (Hons) and achieved a Commendation at the College of Law. Nikki also holds a post-graduate diploma in UK, EU and US Copyright Law from Kings College London.
Huw Walters has more than 20 years experience of tv business affairs, programme finance and rights exploitation with a particular focus on international co-production.
Prior to joining Industry, he was Commercial Director of multi BAFTA winning animation producer Calon and, before that, he was Director of International Business and Head of Co-Productions at Welsh broadcaster S4C.
Huw has recent experience of negotiating deals with all the major UK broadcasters and with key international broadcasters including ZDF, France Television and ABC Australia.
He has brokered co-production deals in every major territory and led a team distributing programmes to over 100 countries around the world. He was also directly responsible for negotiating and completing co-production deals with high profile international partners including Discovery US, HBO, CBC, AETN, France Television, ZDF and ABC.
As a result, Huw has a thorough understanding of tv business affairs contracts, co-production treaties, talent union arrangements and agreements relating to ancillary exploitation such as books, merchandising and DVDs.
Craig Dickson has worked in the media sector for the last 34 years and his experience and expertise spans Theatre, Radio, Publishing, Film & Television.
Prior to qualifying as a lawyer, he spent 8 years working in Theatre and Radio (BBC) followed by 10 years in Television, first as a script editor for the BBC and Granada and then as a Development Executive for the Head of BBC Drama Serials.
After studying law part time for 5 years and gaining a First Class degree from the University of Westminster, Craig joined Schillings law firm in 1998, qualified in 2000 and then returned to the creative sector where he spent the next 13 years working as in-house counsel for PFD, Curtis Brown and Cuba Pictures, the film and television production company operated by Curtis Brown.
Craig’s expertise and communication skills are underlined by his appointment as a Senior Visiting Lecturer in the media department of Royal Holloway College, University of London, a position he continues to hold.
Craig is nothing less than a true all-rounder and knowledge powerhouse, who has spent his entire career assisting creators in their creative endeavours.
Carl joined Industry in January 2012 following training at sports and commercial law firm Max Bitel Greene LLP. He previously worked at Clifford Chance LLP, where he operated and maintained a business development project.
Carl has worked across many areas of Industry’s practice and has significant knowledge in dealing with all aspects of production contracts, particularly talent issues, and also has specific specialist experience in dovetailing broadcasting deals and distribution deals.
Carl is a graduate of the University of Exeter where he read Law.
Jessica assists with all aspects of the business, including paralegal support and contracts administration, finance and marketing and helps in the smooth running of the office. Jessica previously worked in a media law firm as a legal secretary and paralegal, and also at The Treasury Solicitors as Team Administrator.
James Grant Group Ltd
94 Strand on the Green
London W4 3NN