ENTERTAINMENT LAWYER IN NIGERIA
The Business of Entertainment is a big business in Nigeria , Africa and the whole world at large. It is inseparable from the daily life and custom of millions of people across the Globe.
Music, Cinematograph films, Artistic Works and Literature among other fields of entertainment have made life easier and fun for people from different facets across the world; uniting them into achieving a common goal ; Being entertained. Entertainment is a big business that sure has its perks . The flashy Cars, the spotlight, the showbiz and glamour, the business aspect and other facets of entertainment too numerous to mention .
Entertainment Business is a Money Making Machine with services that 90 percent of the world’s population show interest and partake in regularly .
There is unfortunately : A SAD PART !
It is pertinent to state that no matter how talented or skilled some people/entities are with the Entertainment services they provide, they will never really cash out or make financial gains from it. It is common place to see that a lot of professionals and entities in the entertainment industry are faced with numerous legal challenges . They face financial exploitation, depression, bankruptcy among others.
Alas, talent is never enough!
They do not lack the talent nor is it the skill or money. It is the lack of vital knowledge of industry norms and regulations, intellectual property rights and pertinent entertainment law provisions. This lack of knowledge leads to a steady decline in and eventual collapse of their career and business .
Furthermore, there is need for clear and adequate knowledge on how the entertainment industry works . The knowledge must be disseminated to stakeholders that are interested in enjoying maximum rewards off their creative efforts and business investments in the entertainment industry in Nigeria .
This is where an Entertainment lawyer comes in.
WHAT IS ENTERTAINMENT LAW ?
The Black’s Law Dictionary defines Entertainment Law as “ The field of law dealing with the legal and business issues in the entertainment industry (such as film , music and theatre ) and involving the representation of artists and producers , the negotiation of contracts and the protection of intellectual property right.
In Addition, Entertainment law can also be defined as the aspect of law that regulates , protects and interprets services , rights and acts inherent in the different facets of the entertainment industry .
Entertainment law as such can be simply defined as all legal services that is associated with the entertainment industry i.e. the entirety of legal provisions and services relevant to the entertainment industry. The field of law covers music, comedy, film and television, broadcasts , fashion, tourism, sports, event management, photography, NFTs and many more aspects of entertainment.
WHO IS AN ENTERTAINMENT LAWYER ?
Entertainment lawyer in simple terms is a lawyer with expertise in Entertainment Law and Intellectual Property .
‘Entertainment law’ and ‘Intellectual Property’ are used interchangeably . It should however be stated that intellectual property is just a significant part of entertainment law. It should not be substituted with entertainment law. Entertainment law is broad and Intellectual property is a simply segment of it.
These type of lawyers in Nigeria represent and protect the interests of creatives, companies , entertainment business professionals and other stakeholders in the many areas of the entertainment industry in Nigeria. The areas include but not limited to film, television, new media, theater, branding , sports , licensing , print , publishing and music among others . They also advise these individuals and entities on legal matters and general industry practice relating to these facets of the entertainment field.
Furthermore, Entertainment lawyers must be creative and have passion for creativity. This is the driving factor that will enable the lawyer deliver better results to clients because he can relate more with the issues and problems besieging the creative client or business.
DO I NEED AN ENTERTAINMENT LAWYER ?
If your services fall within the Entertainment Industry in Nigeria especially within the
The Film and Television industry in Nigeria ( Nollywood )
The Comedy industry in Nigeria
Music Industry in Nigeria
The Print and Electronic media in Nigeria
Music production in Nigeria
The Advertising industry in Nigeria
The Broadcasting industry In Nigeria
Book Publishing in Nigeria
You need the services of an entertainment lawyer in Nigeria .
Fisrstly, Recording Artistes , OAPs, Event Hosts, Dancers, Painters , Sculptors , Programmers , Videographers , Photographers, , Sound Engineers , Music producers, Artiste and Repertoire (A/R), Songwriters, Instrumentalists , Interpreters, Authors, Fashion designers, Spoken Words Artistes, NFT creators , Content Creators and Video directors etc. in Nigeria , need the services of an entertainment lawyer in Nigeria .
Furthermore. if you are a Music Business Executive , Record Label Owner , Publishing company owner , Artiste Manager , Show Promoter , Artiste Agent or Personal Assistant , Distribution Company Owner etc. in Nigeria , you need an entertainment lawyer.
Finally , for Publishing Companies , Record labels , Advertising agencies , PR agencies , Show Promotion companies , Management companies , Film Production Houses , Studio House , Book Publishers among others , the services of an entertainment lawyer in Nigeria is paramount .
Wizkid, Davido , Burna Boy , Tekno, Tiwa Savage , Olamide , Simi, Yemi Alade, Ramsey Nouah , AY, RMD, Genevieve Nnaji, Omolola Jolade , Tacha , Mercy Eke, Tonto Dikeh , Donjazzy , Dbanj , Wande coal , Chris Brown, Rihanna , JayZ , Kanye West and a host of other entertainers all have an Entertainment lawyer on retainer to handle and perform all functions of an entertainment lawyer stated in this article .
Companies and Brands like X3M ideas , Mavins Record , Chocolate City, Project Fame , Naija Sings , Gulder Ultimate Search , BB Naija , DMW and numerous other Entertainment entities also have the services of an Entertainment lawyer included in their budget .
WHY DO I NEED AN ENTERTAINMENT LAWYER IN NIGERIA ?
The scope of work of an entertainment lawyer in Nigeria is extensive. Some of their most common duties and reasons why you need an entertainment lawyer in Nigeria include:
- Protection of Intellectual Property
- Contracts and Agreements
- Legal Advise
- Sponsorship and Funding
Negotiations constitutes an essential item for any progressive creative or entertainment business in Nigeria. It is inevitable that negotiations occur during interactions with prospective investors , fans or brands .
The entertainment lawyer is experienced in negotiations as it is a basic skill of practice as a lawyer . Rather than advocate or negotiate deals that can make or mar your career or business all by yourself with little to no knowledge of complex industry terms and clauses that can be open to multiple interpretations, the lawyer who is an expert in the field can broker terms for you .
The lawyer will also make sure that you get fair compensation for your contributions and your rights are properly exploited .
Negotiations are made to favour you either by reducing the obligations and liabilities on you or increasing the compensation for such services you render . The job of the entertainment lawyer in Nigeria is to ensure your interest is protected and what benefits you is properly negotiated .
2. PROTECTION OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY
Intellectual Property implies “property” created or derived from usage of the creator’s “ Intellect “.
Intellectual property rights can then be defined as the rights vested in a creator over his Intellectual creation and protected by the law thus preventing others from exploiting the creation without the Creator’s due authorization. The rights include the right to reproduction , right to translation and adaptation , right to broadcast and making available to the public , right of public performance etc.
It is inherent in literary works , musical works , artistic works , Cinematograph films and other aspect of creative works. These rights must be properly documented and protected from unauthorized third parties. Catalogue , Books , Movies , Beats and other creative works all have inherent rights that must be protected .
The entertainment industry necessitates protection of your intellectual property from those who may want to buy it, ,reproduce it, license it—or infringe upon it with unauthorized use. A lawyer in the entertainment field will utilize appropriate mechanisms in form of contractual documents , registrations , automation , litigation and other recognized legal means to ensure you enjoy the rewards of your creative work and you are protected from undue exploitation . The lawyer will also supervise and ensure that a client’s intellectual property is handled properly and protected when copyright or trademark issues arise.
3. CONTRACTS AND AGREEMENT
The lawyer is responsible for drafting talent agreements , split sheets , licensing agreements , recording deals , publishing deals , employment agreements and other necessary agreements for creatives and entertainment business professionals in the entertainment industry in Nigeria.
Contracts remain an essential feature in transactions, business relationships and the subsequent growth of creatives and entertainment business professionals . The Entertainment Lawyer in Nigeria ensures contracts and agreements that favour the client is drafted . He or she reviews the contract and agreement given to the client by third parties .
He or she also ensures you understand the terms and implication of contracts that you are about to sign . Whether it’s an artiste signing a recording deal or a film studio signing a employee agreement with actors or a non disclosure agreement between a writer and a ghost writer , an entertainment lawyer must be involved .
4. LEGAL ADVISE
You will get legal advise on labour law ,deals , documentation , registration , associations , intellectual property rights and other areas of entertainment that will immensely contribute to the growth of your career as creative or business as an entertainment entity from your entertainment lawyer in Nigeria .
Furthermore, the lawyer also enlightens you on your basic rights and knowledge of your intellectual property such that you can handle basic negotiations and understand the exploitation of your rights properly
5.SPONSORSHIP AND FUNDING
Entertainment lawyer help creatives and entertainment entities in Nigeria seek funding and sponsorship. Accordingly, they do this by checking out regulations guiding such areas . They thereafter provide subsequent recommendations on the next steps to take.
The lawyers are conversant with the financial aspects of the entertainment industry in Nigeria. They see a lot of the juicy opportunities in the entertainment industry first and are quick to recommend such funding opportunities to their clients for immediate action or application .
The lawyer introduces and connect their clients to other prominent stakeholders in the entertainment industry .Networking is perhaps one of the most important skills in the entertainment industry . A lawyer aids networking in the entertainment industry by connecting old or new clients together for specific entertainment projects.
A client paying for the services of an entertainment lawyer in Nigeria also get to interact and network with the lawyer’s clients at events, meetings or upon referral. The clients gets proper opinion on who to do business with or network with in the entertainment industry courtesy of sound legal advise from expert lawyers in the field .
The entertainment industry often witness issues and disputes. These issues arise during transactions that occur between creatives or businesses within the Entertainment industry . There are some issues that cannot be effectively resolved with negotiation and mediation . As such , these issues get to the court of law .
Entertainment lawyer in Nigeria is conversant with intellectual property law knowledge that will be needed to have a headway in the suit . Entertainment Law is a niche field . A regular lawyer cannot have proper insight on the issues in dispute like an entertainment lawyer. It is only an entertainment lawyer that has all the proper insights and knowledge to help you succeed in a lawsuit pertaining to intellectual property and entertainment in Nigeria.
WE HAVE A MANAGER , PA , AGENT , DO WE STILL NEED AN ENTERTAINMENT LAWYER IN NIGERIA ?
People often focus their efforts on getting representation through a manager , PA or agent. They believe that having a manager or agent can take the place of having an entertainment lawyer in Nigeria .
However, the truth is that ,legal language and clauses can be quite tricky .There are some aspects of regulations in Nigeria pertaining to the entertainment industry that a manager , PA or agent cannot properly interpret or oversee as doing such will be very detrimental to their client or principal . This is the duty of an entertainment lawyer . The PA , manager or agent do not have the legal expertise or experience of an entertainment lawyer . They cannot interpret or oversee pertinent legal dynamics in the entertainment industry of Nigeria .
I HAVE A LAWYER , DO I STILL NEED AN ENTERTAINMENT LAWYER IN NIGERIA ?
There are general doctors , and then there are specialty doctors .
A lady goes to a doctor and when the issues discovered are significantly related to her body , she is referred to a gynecologist . This is not because the doctor does not have working knowledge of what to administer to the lady . It is because the gynecologist has superior knowledge on such area of specialization .
For example :
a) A man with eye problem.
b) A sick child on consultation with a doctor.
The man will be referred to an ophthalmologist who is an expert in treatment of eyes . However , a child will be referred to a Pediatrician who is an expert in child treatment .
Specialists are more knowledgeable . They can effectively and efficiently tackle the health issue discovered more than the general doctors .
This analogy also applies to lawyers and entertainment lawyers in Nigeria . Lawyers have general knowledge of the issues. Entertainment lawyers in Nigeria are the specialists in the entertainment field . They treat the entertainment issues more effectively and efficiently and ensure higher success rate .
SHOULD I RETAIN AN ENTERTAINMENT LAWYER IN NIGERIA?
I only do one offs and I might not need the lawyer services every time? This is the mindset of some creatives and Entertainment business professionals in Nigeria.
The big question is ,
a) would you rather have a family doctor that attends to all your issues within a budget agreed upon .
b) would you prefer to pay a doctor every-time you have a medical issue regardless of the fluctuations in prices of medical services or drugs ?
Prevention is better than cure . As a matter of fact, entertainment lawyers in Nigeria are not only needed when disputes or issues arise. They are in-fact retained so that issues don’t arise. Firthermore,they give proper legal advise and help you negotiate properly to prevent avoidable issues .
Entertainment lawyer in Nigeria on retainer is beneficial to creatives and entertainment entities because
a) it reduces the cost of the legal services on the client,
b) Retainer arrangement enables faster dispensation of services,
c) it ensures quicker access to the attorney,
d) Retainer arrangement ensures access to the client’s network of creatives and entertainment business professionals,
e) It allows for proper communication of issues between parties as client is treated as priority .
HOW MUCH DO ENTERTAINMENT LAWYERS BILL ?
Entertainment lawyers in Nigeria are quite affordable and flexible . Entertainment lawyers work with retainer agreements or one off deals , depending on the circumstances and client.
ENTERTAINMENT LAWYER IN NIGERIA .
Olaoluwa Idowu is an Entertainment lawyer in Nigeria who has worked with the likes of Tuface Idibia , Del B , Airboy and others . In addition , he is the covener of Intellectual Property Series For Creatives. Olaoluwa is the author of the book “ Intellectual Property 101 : For Creatives and Entertainment Business Professionals.
Furthermore, he has published several Entertainment law and Intellectual Property articles. You can read the articles on websites and platforms like Nairaland , WIPO ( World Intellectual Property Organization) , LinkedIn and others . He has also lectured at several intellectual property events across Nigeria.
Olaoluwa Idowu is passionate about enlightening creatives and Entertainment business professionals on their intellectual property rights .He can be contacted via 09049483747.
The Email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Website is www.olaoluwa idowu.org.
Instagram handle is Iamsynord.
A Facebook Group for Creatives to access is : Facebook Group
You can contact an Entertainment Lawyer for enquiries and more clarifications on Entertainment Law and Intellectual Property Rights .