Investing in Movies : Strategies for Investors and Producers book cover
1st Edition

Investing in Movies
Strategies for Investors and Producers

ISBN 9780415791915
Published May 15, 2017 by Routledge
252 Pages

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Book Description

Investing in Movies: Strategies for Investors and Producers is a useful guide for investors and producers looking for an analytical framework to assess the opportunities and pitfalls of film investments. The book traces macroeconomic trends and the globalization of the business, as well as the impact these have on potential returns. It offers a broad range of guidelines on how to source interesting projects and advice on what kinds of projects to avoid, as well as numerous ways to maximize risk-adjusted returns. While focusing primarily on investments in independent films, industry veteran and author Joseph Cohen also provides valuable insights into the studio and independent slate deals that have been marketed to the institutional investment community.

Features of this book include:

  • A guide to the minefield of film investing for the potential investor, giving students and aspiring professionals an insider perspective;
  • A detailed explanation of the risk and rewards inherent in the film business and how to evaluate projects;
  • Thorough coverage of the cast of characters that populate the film space, and advice on building relationships to optimize opportunities.

Table of Contents



Chapter 1 - Pros and Cons of Motion Picture Investment

Chapter 2 - Macroeconomic Trends and Studio Co-financing

Chapter 3 - Tax and other "Soft Money" Benefits and Limited Partnerships

Chapter 4 - Welcome to the World of Independents

Chapter 5 - The Evolution of Revenue Streams

Chapter 6 - Cast of Characters

Chapter 7 - Globalization of the Business

Chapter 8 - How to Have Fun and Not Lose Your Shirt

Chapter 9 - Managing Risk

Chapter 10 - Working the Banks

Chapter 11 - How to Beat the Odds: Niche Strategies

Chapter 12 - Evaluating Projects

Chapter 13 - Where you Should Be in The Food Chain: Distribution Versus Production

Chapter 14 - The Sinkhole of Development

Chapter 15 - Exit Strategies: The Value of Film Libraries

Chapter 16 - New Directions – The Digital World

Chapter 17 - Art Versus Commerce

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A graduate of Yale and Oxford, Joseph Cohen held senior positions at Salomon and Lehman Bros before he became President of Largo Entertainment, a joint venture between JVC and producer Lawrence Gordon., in 1989. During Cohen’s tenure, Largo produced such hits as Point Break and Malcolm X. Cohen founded American Entertainment Investors (AEI) in 1996, which is best known for advising independent production companies, including Alcon, River Road and Black Label. AEI advised Goldman Sachs and Assured Guaranty in restructuring the Weinstein Company in 2010. Cohen is a member of the Motion Picture Academy and has taught film finance at the Peter Stark Producing Program at USC.


"Joe Cohen is not only one of the most knowledgeable people in the world regarding film finance, he is also one of the most honorable people with whom we have ever worked. This book is a valuable tool in understanding how the movie business functions today, and where it is headed in the future."

—Andrew A. Kosove & Broderick Johnson, Co-Founders/Co-CEOs, Alcon Entertainment, LLC

"If you want to know how to actually make money, not lose it, investing in films—Yes, you read that correctly, and it can be done—this is a must read from the smartest, most experienced guy doing just that, successfully for many years."

—Larry Turman, Producer, Director of The Peter Stark Producing Program, USC