Freeway Entertainment’s Managing Director Gadi Wildstrom features in a business report by Screen International’s Geoffrey Macnab, entitled ‘Following the money trail’, examining how collection agencies have become increasingly important as rights holders are becoming more proactive about maximising revenues in the global film business.
Gadi says: “If there are several financiers [on a film], it can become problematic… It becomes a question of who gets what, and in what position and where, out of the revenues. In addition, if you have more parties involved, when it comes to money, people don’t trust each other.” He describes the collection agency’s role as being akin to that of the financial policeman on the film.
“Producers factor us into their business plans but they don’t need to factor us into the budget because we get paid out of the revenue of the film. That is a big advantage for producers, especially nowadays when budgets are very tight,” adds Gadi.
“Their integrity is unparalleled, the ones that are established,” UK producer Kevin Loader of Free Range Films says of the top collection agencies. He points out that cash-strapped independent producers are using ever more complex deal-making techniques with above-the-line talent. For these to work, it is essential to have prompt and accurate financial reporting. “You’re creating a participation pool, which would effectively have a corridor from gross receipts or sales.”