Filmmaker on boat

VLA offers a variety of programs and workshops, which are listed below. We also offer a selection of on-demand, online recordings of previously held education programs for those unable to attend or want a refresher. Click here to access and view these presentations.

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Risky Business: Financing and Distributing Your Independent Film (CLE)

March 17, 2022 @ 1:00 pm - March 18, 2022 @ 4:30 pm

Filmmaker on boat

This program is a two-day online seminar offering up to 7 Continuing Legal Education credits to attorneys. 

Dates and Time (Participants should attend both days):
Thursday, March 17, 1 – 4:30 PM EST
Friday, March 18, 1 – 4:30 PM EST

This two-day comprehensive seminar—for new attorneys, attorneys transitioning to entertainment law, and filmmakers—explores how independent films are financed and distributed. The program is presented by Mark Litwak, Esq., a veteran entertainment attorney and author.

Particular attention will be paid to how producers and filmmakers can protect themselves, including:

  • Criteria for selecting a distributor;
  • Investigating distributors;
  • Adding contract provisions and understanding contract terms
  • Dealing with investors, and more

Other topics will include compliance with state and federal laws regarding investors, retaining an attorney, producer rep, and publicist, and confirming awards and enforcing judgments.

As part of this program, participants will receive a copy of a 150 slide PowerPoint presentation and 150-page detailed handout.

Continuing Legal Education through VLA:
Seven (7) New York Continuing Legal Education credits awarded for attorneys: 4 Areas of Professional Practice Credits, 2 Skills credits, and 1 Ethics credit. This program qualifies as “transitional” for newly admitted attorneys.


Mark Litwak is a veteran entertainment attorney with offices in Santa Monica, California. His practice includes work in the areas of copyright, trademark, contract, multimedia law, intellectual property, and book publishing. Litwak is an adjunct professor at USC Law School, and functions as a Producer’s Rep, assisting filmmakers in the financing, marketing and distribution of their films. Litwak is the author of six books including: Reel Power, Dealmaking in the Film and Television Industry (winner of the 1995 Krazna-Kranz Moving Image Book Award), Contracts for the Film and Television Industry, Litwak’s Multimedia Producer’s Handbook, and Risky Business, Financing and Distributing Independent Film.

Membership Discount Code:
For members, please contact to receive your discount code, which will allow you to access and purchase your ticket.


Full-Time Student and Artist Over Sixty (student must present proof of full-time status with registration):

Arts Professional VLA Member:

Arts Professional Non-Member:

Legal Professional VLA Member:

Legal Professional Non-Member:

Young Associate Members:

Please note you are not registered until full payment is received. For attorneys, there are various scholarships available. To view our Financial Aid Policy Guidelines and for more information on how to apply, click here.

All registration fees are non-refundable.

Zoom Access: Participants will receive an email in advance with instructions to access the webinar. Please note that this is a live webinar. We are unable to distribute a recording of this presentation.


March 17, 2022 @ 1:00 pm
March 18, 2022 @ 4:30 pm
Event Category:


NY United States


Event type
CLE Class
Event Cate
CLE Class