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What Is A First Look Deal (Explained: All You Need To Know)

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What is a First Look Deal?

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Let me explain to you what a First Look Deal is and why it’s important!

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What Is First Look Deal

A first look deal is a contractual provision where one party grants the other party the right to own, purchase, license, invest, or take certain actions when new projects arise or certain events take place.

In other words, with a first look deal, a party has a “first look” at the potential deal or project by being granted rights such as right of first refusal, pre-emption rights, or right of first offer.

The objective is for the beneficiary of the first look deal to be informed of a new project or opportunity first.

For example, if an actor has a first look deal with a film studio, the actor may be given the first look deal to work on a new movie production, film, or project.

With the first look deal, the studio will present the project to the actor first before offering the project to another actor.

The main objective of a first look deal is to give a party the opportunity to exercise certain rights over a new project or business venture.

Keep reading as I will further break down the meaning of a first look deal and tell you how it works.

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Why Is A First Look Deal Important

First look deals are important contractual provisions that give parties key contractual rights on future projects or opportunities that may arise.

Since a first look deal is the granting of rights such as right to first offer, right of first refusal, and pre-emptive rights for a certain period of time, the party being granted the such right will have the upper hand over competitors or others in the market.

For example, if a film studio has a first look deal with a top actor, the actor will have the upper hand over competitors by being offered new projects and deciding whether he or she will take it or not.

Another reason why first look deals are important is that the market will associate the contracting parties with one another.

When the contracting parties have a great reputation in the market, their association can lead to synergistic outcomes.

There can be many other reasons why first look deals can be important in business, such as enhancing the parties’ brand, prestige, ability to share resources, build long lasting relationships, and so on.

Recommended article: What is a right of first refusal

First Look Deal Examples

Let’s look at a few examples of first look deals to better understand the concept.

In the film industry, first look deals are quite common with great actors who have at least one blockbuster movie under their belt.

For example, if the production company has a new project in mind that fits the actor’s requirements, the production company will first offer the project to the actor so he or she has an opportunity to assess the opportunity.

If the opportunity is good, the actor can choose to exercise the right to work on the project.

On the other hand, if the project is not good, the actor can simply pass and let the production company offer the project to other actors.

Another example of a first look deal is between a writer and a production company or film studio.

In this case, the production company or film studio will pay the writer a fee to have the first look at a new script, manuscript, or other.

This way, the producer or film studio will have the exclusive right to be the first party to decide whether or not they will want to purchase rights over the material.

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First Look Deal FAQ

What does a first look deal mean?

A first look deal refers to a contractual right giving a party the chance to have a “first look” at a new project, business venture, or opportunity.

The idea is that the party given the right to a first look has the right to get the details of a potential deal and decide whether or not he or she will want to work on that project.

The party who has the right to a first look does not have the obligation to work on the project that is being offered but will have the right to find out about the project before anyone else.

What’s the purpose of a first look deal?

The main purpose of a first look deal is to give another party the right to see a potentially interesting new project, business venture, or opportunity before others are notified.

For example, if a studio is looking to make a new movie, it will offer the opportunity to the actor with whom it has a first look deal.

This way, the actor is given the opportunity to review the script and assess the opportunity before any other actor.

What are examples of first look deals?

There are many examples of first look deals in the entertainment and film industry.

Here are some examples of first look deals signed by different celebrities:

  • Serena Williams signing a first look TV deal with Amazon Studios
  • Jordan Peele signs a first look deal with Column 
  • Matt Jackson signs a first look deal with Fifth Season
  • Matt Reeves signs a first look deal with Warner Bros

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Takeaways 

So there you have it folks!

What does a first look deal mean?

In a nutshell, a first look deal is a contract where a party is given pre-emptive rights, right of first refusal, or right of the first offer when a specific opportunity becomes available in the future.

The right can give the contracting party the right to buy something, co-own something, invest in something, license something, or otherwise participate in a new project in a certain capacity.

Typically, the first look deal is granted for a certain period of time in exchange for a fee.

For instance, Party A will pay Party B a specific amount of money so a first look deal is granted by Party B.

The purpose of a first look deal is to give a party an “exclusive” right to first have a look at a new project or opportunity.

This is quite common in the film industry where writers, independent production companies, film studios, actors, distributors, and other parties can enter into first look deal arrangements.

Now that you know what a first look deal means and how it works, good luck with your research!

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Author

Amir K.
Hello Nation! I'm a lawyer by trade and an entrepreneur by spirit. I specialize in law, business, marketing, and technology (and I love it!). I'm also an expert SEO and content marketer. On this blog, I share my experience, knowledge, and provide you with golden nuggets of useful information. Enjoy! Feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn.

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