Script Writer Agreement Checklist


If you are writing a script for a television or film production, or you are hiring someone to write a script, it’s important to set out the terms of the arrangement in a Script Writer Agreement.

A Script Writer Agreement covers issues including copyright ownership, payment, what’s expected to be delivered and whether the writer will be given a credit in connection with the production. Before a writer gets started on the script, all the terms and conditions should be agreed upon, so the checklist below will help determine what factors need to be discussed and confirmed.

Fill out the checklist below to get started with a Script Writer Agreement. 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 or working title of the project or production?
B. Provide a brief description of the project or production including the genre, length and synopsis.
C. What is the name, ABN and address of the Writer?
D. What is the name, ABN and address of the Producer or Production Company who is hiring the Writer?

2. Writer Services

A. What are the exact services the Writer is required to provide (e.g. Deliver First Draft, Three rounds of edits, assistance with pitching or promotion)?
B. Is the Writer required to attend any writers rooms?
C. Are there any restrictions on the Writer providing services to other people during or after this project/ production (e.g. no working for competitors)? If so, how long and in what locations/areas/countries will the restrictions apply?

3. Deliverables

A. What does the Writer need to deliver (e.g. how many drafts/edits)?
B. What are the delivery dates or delivery schedule (e.g. the first draft, second draft, final shooting script, etc)?
C. Where and/or how will the deliverables be delivered by the Writer (e.g. digitally and/or on a hard drive)?
D. How will editing decisions and approvals over deliverables work? (Consider who has creative control and the time frames for feedback and re-drafts/amendments.)

4. Fee, Royalties and Expenses

A. What fee will the Writer be paid?
B. When will payments be made (e.g. is there an hourly fee, or a payment schedule based on the Writer delivering deliverables or meeting certain goals)?
C. Is the Writer entitled to a share of the profits made from the production, or entitled to a commission or royalties? If so, how will the profit share or commission be calculated and when will it be paid (i.e. how regularly)?
D. Will the Writer be reimbursed for any expenses? What approvals does the Writer need to obtain from the Producer in connection with expenses?

5. Copyright Ownership and Control

A. Who will own copyright in the project or production and/or any of the deliverables?
B. Are there any limitations on the Producer's use or exploitation of the drafts/script (or ancillary materials)?

6. Credit and Promotion

A. How will the Writer be credited or involved in the promotion of the project or production?
B. Does the Writer have to participate in promotion of the project or production?

7. Special Conditions

A. Are there any special conditions that apply to the arrangement between the Producer and Writer?

Your Details

Nearly there! Provide your details below and we'll let you know what else we need to get started.
Your Name
Your Email Address
Your Contact Number
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