Legal Counsel-Commission/Production

Paramount Pictures
Sep 24, 2023
Oct 03, 2023
Contract Type

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To support the commissioning of scripted and unscripted content for our linear and non–linear services but also available to work on other matters as the business may require. It is anticipated that this role will cover a broad range of activity from scripted and unscripted commissions and acquisitions across the PSB "5" portfolio Channel 5, 5Star, 5Action, 5 Select, Milkshake! and My5 as well as across other services such as Paramount+ and Paramount Kids & Family brands e.g. Nickelodeon with a flexibility to work across other brands, non–programming work and territories as the business requires. As a result, you will have the opportunity to work with a broad range of commissioners and third party suppliers, both qualifying and non–qualifying independent production companies, across all genres, as well as studios, licensors, agents and rights holders in the UK and internationally. You will review and advise on, negotiate, draft and deliver development and production agreements, content licences and ancillary contracts enabling us to deliver exciting, entertaining and inspiring content to our audiences.

What will you be doing?

  • Drafting, negotiating and advising on standard and non–standard development, acquisition and Programme Production Agreements and/or other ancillary contracts (e.g. presenter agreements, work for hire production agreements, access agreements and programme finance documents), within the framework of PACT agreed Terms of Trade, where applicable
  • Reviewing chain of title documents and underlying rights agreements; advising on commitments made in Editorial/Commissioning Specification Forms, as well as cross–brand content sharing of existing VCNI programming (for both UK and international exploitation)
  • Guiding and advising the commissioning teams on rights and legal matters (including but not limited to new and emerging media functionalities, utility and usage rules, holdbacks, video–on–demand services, copyright, music, press and promotional activities rights and clearances etc.)
  • Advising on and supporting a variety of finance arrangements, which may include both hard and soft money as well as advertiser funded agreement and other alternative finance
  • Experience of working on content production agreements and contracts e.g. presenter agreements, access agreement etc and the ability to input into these for external productions or lead on them in the case of in–house production activity
  • Ensuring that all compliance and governance obligations are appropriately met and managed, within UK and US framework
  • Maintaining effective, efficient, and consistent commercial relationships with programme suppliers whilst effectively negotiating programme rights and terms in accordance with VCNI and industry benchmarks
  • Maintaining and managing internal relationships particularly with Content Legal & Compliance team, the Programming Department (Commissioning Editors, Programme Management, scheduling etc.), the Privacy/DP legal team, the Music & Media Licensing team and as required, Digital Media Group (VOD), Sales (AFPs etc), Finance, Commercial Partnerships (Distribution, linked telephony competitions, clips etc) etc.
  • Establishing, maintaining and improving relationships with key partners externally, including production companies/groups, industry bodies and unions (e.g., PACT, DUK, Equity, WGGB, Bectu) etc.
  • Reviewing and updating company precedents where necessary
  • Advising on changes in law likely to materially affect VCNI's business activities
  • Advising the business on intellectual property rights and general commercial matters and take steps to reduce areas of potential risk
  • Advising in respect of exploitation of ancillary programme rights (publishing, merchandising, VOD, DTO, DVD etc.)
  • Assist in the training and development of the more junior members of the team (possibly having informal/formal line management responsibility depending on experience)
  • Input into team best practice, knowhow and template agreements where required
  • Liaising with outside legal counsel, where required
  • Flexibility to work on ad hoc tasks and projects across the BALA team as required

What are we looking for?

  • A vast amount of post qualification experience, in–house and/or in private practice; or significant experience of working in a production management and commissioning business and legal affairs team
  • Demonstrable experience in drafting and negotiating rights agreements within the television/media industry gained from working for a public service broadcaster or independent production company either in–house or in private practice, but general media/IP experience is required.
  • A solid knowledge of rights issues, contract law, copyright law and distribution
  • A basic knowledge and understanding of media compliance laws and issues, including the Ofcom Code
  • Excellent drafting skills – ability to take instructions on a wide variety of contracts and produce working drafts (both with and without reliance on precedent) to meet business requirements
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills and an ability to interact with people at all levels within and outside an organisation as well as to present complex legal advice and conclusions concisely
  • An ability to deal with a large and varied workload, often under critical time pressure
  • A flexible, hardworking teammate with energy, drive and resilience
  • Strong attention to detail and analytical skills, combined with the ability to see the strategic perspective and the creativity to find a creative solution to business issues
  • A positive and constructive attitude – able to deal with pressurised situations in a calm and effective manner

Unleash your potential in a place you belong!

At Paramount Networks International (part of Paramount Global), we have an iconic portfolio of brands, like Paramount Pictures, MTV, Nickelodeon, Channel 5, Comedy Central and many more, reaching more than 3.8 billion subscribers in 180+ countries and territories, via more than 200 locally programmed and operated TV channels and more than 550 digital media and mobile TV properties, in 40 languages.

Come and join a culture where content, people and ideas merge. An exciting and open place where your talents can truly thrive and where our employees make it unique. You could be the next addition to our incredible team!

Paramount is an equal opportunity employer (EOE) including disability/vet.

At Paramount, the spirit of inclusion feeds into everything that we do, on–screen and off. From the programming and movies we create to employee benefits/programs and social impact outreach initiatives, we believe that opportunity, access, resources and rewards should be available to and for the benefit of all. Paramount is proud to be an equal opportunity workplace and is an affirmative action employer. We are committed to equal employment opportunity regardless of race, color, ethnicity, ancestry, religion, creed, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, citizenship status, marital status, disability, gender identity, gender expression, and Veteran status.

If you have any difficulties in applying or require access needs arising from a mobility or any other impairment please let us know by emailing or calling . We can then ensure your experience and visit is as smooth and enjoyable as possible.