Book Option Agreement Checklist


It’s an exciting step turning a book or other written work into a project for the small or big screen, and when this happens you’ll need a Book Option Agreement.

Whether you’re an author, producer or a production company, you can use our Book Option Agreement Checklist to determine the key terms that should be considered and included in a Book Option Agreement. Key terms of a Book Option Agreement include payment, exclusivity and the involvement of the author in the screen production or project. Fill out the checklist below if you'd like us to draft a Book Option Agreement to fit your needs. If you can’t answer certain questions, you’ll probably need legal advice, so just put ‘I don’t know’ or get in touch!

1. Parties and Project

A. What is the name of the book or written work?
B. What is the name of the author?
C. What is the name, ABN and address of the legal owner of the rights in the book/written work?
D. What is the name, ABN and address of the person/entity seeking the option rights?

2. Fees

A. Will there be an upfront option fee?
B. Will there be an extension fee?
C. What sums will be paid to the author/owner if the project goes to production (e.g. purchase price, royalties etc)?
D. How will the sums payable be calculated/decided (e.g. profit share split, consultancy fees, percentage of production budget)?
E. At what times will such payments be made? Or, what events will trigger such payments?

3. Term

A. How long will the option last?
B. Are there any extension periods?
C. Are there any time period restrictions to complete production once the option is exercised?

4. Services and Deliverables

A. What services (if any) will be provided by the author or owner (e.g. consultation, script writing, researching, promotional activities, pitching to networks/producers, production, delivery of materials/research etc)?
B. How much time (if any) is the author or owner required to commit to the project?
C. What needs to be delivered to the person obtaining the option?

5. Rights and Restrictions

A. Has any other party ever been granted rights in the book or story?
B. Does the author/owner own any rights in the name of the book?
C. Will the author/owner reserve any rights? (Consider radio plays, other audio-visual format rights, theatre productions, any ancillary rights such as merchandise.)
D. Will the author/owner be restricted from consulting other parties or engaging in other activities relating to the book and/or the content of the book?

6. Approvals

A. Are there any specific approvals (or rights of consultation) required from either party (e.g. creative, financial, production elements etc)?

7. Credits

A. Any specific credits required?

8. Special Conditions

A. Are there any special conditions (i.e. unusual elements or anomalies) which apply to the arrangement, book, relationship, project or production?

Your Details

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