Film Makers Discuss the Malta Film Industry & Impinging IP Rights

Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates' presentation on the importance of IP protection of film productions.

Dr. Silvana Zammit | Published on 24 Jun 2016

Film Industry img

Bridging practice and legal aspects affecting the Malta film industry was the aim of the event held by HandsOn Malta - a school for Malta film makers. Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates was invited to be the main speaker of this event during which students aspiring to be players in the Malta film industry as well as seasoned producers and directors were briefed on the legal implications of their daily work and were provided tips as to how rights, especially intellectual property rights, arise and can be protected. 

IP Rights and the Malta Film Industry

During the event organised by HandsOn Malta which was held on the 24th of June 2016, a legal associate at Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates specialising in intellectual property law, explained the crucial role of intellectual property in the Malta film industry. Indeed, Intellectual property (“IP”) is at the heart of the Malta film industry and it is generally regarded as the core asset of any successful filming venture. Ultimately, the value of a film lies in the IP held in that film. At scriptwriting, production and direction stage, a wide array of IP rights apply and are bestowed and to different right-holders. Proper IP planning is crucial at such an inception stage. The matter may be even more complex since different IP rights may apply to different components of a film. 

The basics of IP law in the context of the Malta film industry were outlined, including the registration and formalization requirements, together with a general overview of the traditional IP rights such as copyright, trademarks and domain names, patents, trade secrets and designs.

Commercial contracts integral to the film process, commercial transactions having IP at their core, granting security using IP rights, taxation, security, product placement and the protection and registration requirements and related formalities were all discussed at length, ensuring a thorough understanding of the IP status quo that students would have to comply with once they start their career in the film industry.

Our Film Practice

Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates offers start-ups and established clients, in the international and Malta film industry, commercial and legal advice in implementing filming projects. The firm’s services include IP advice, tax and corporate structure planning, drafting of all regulatory documentation for the purposes of obtaining relevant permissions, negotiations with and representation before the broadcasting and communications authorities and representation on film development deals.  

The firm also assists clients in benefitting from the various incentives that Malta offers to the film industry for productions to be filmed in Malta. The team at Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates undertakes a case by case analysis and recommends the applicable incentives thus enabling film companies to enjoy the benefits which Malta offers in a financially competitive environment.

Our Intellectual Property Law Practice

The firm’s IP lawyers are experienced in an extensive list of IP-related issues, positioning Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates as the IP law firm of choice for clients who recognize the value of thorough representation on IP-sensitive issues.  

In particular, the firm’s Intellectual Property Law services include initial and ongoing advisory, provision of general guidance on how clients are to secure adequate and effective protection for their intellectual property and to safeguard their interests in the best manner possible, as well as execution of the relative registrations covering registrations of Malta trademarks, Malta patents and Malta designs, registration of trademarks and trademark searches within the EU, design and patent searches.

The firm also assists with contractual dealings and negotiations to ensure optimum IP protection covering negotiating and drafting of confidentiality, non-disclosure, development, distribution, technology transfer, licensing and joint venture agreements for domestic and foreign entities, dispute resolution through planning, mediation, negotiation, out of court settlements, trademark and domain name dispute resolutions and counterfeit good seizures.



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Dr Silvana Zammit

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