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Agreement between the Government of Canada and the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany on Film Relations [1978] CATSer 9 (16 August 1978)

E100741 - CTS 1978 No. 15


The Government of Canada and the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany,

Anxious to promote co-operation on film productions and

Wishing to encourage the co-production of films that would enhance the prestige and contribute to the economic expansion of the film industries in both countries,

Have agreed as follows:



The Contracting Parties shall treat films to be co-produced by producers of both countries in accordance with the following provisions within the framework of their respective national legislation.


(1) Films co-produced under this Agreement are considered national films.

(2) Any subsidies or other financial benefits which may be granted in the territory of either Contracting Party shall accrue to the producer in accordance with the legislation of that Contracting Party.

(3) Films to be co-produced by producers from both countries and covered by this Agreement shall be subject to approval after consultation between the competent authorities of both countries:

In Canada: The Secretary of State

In the Federal Republic of Germany: The Bundesamt fur gewerbliche Wirtschaft


In order to qualify for the benefits of co-production, films must be undertaken by producers who have good technical organization, sound financial backing and recognized professional standing.


(1) Participation by the co-producers shall consist of financial, artistic and technical contributions. In principle, the artistic and technical contributions of each co-producer shall be in proportion to its financial contribution.

(2) The minority co-producer shall contribute not less than thirty (30) per cent of the production cost of the film.


(1) All participants in the making of the film must be, with regard to the Federal Republic of Germany, German nationals or belonging to its cultural sphere and, with regard to Canada, Canadian citizens or landed immigrants.

(2) The technical and artistic participation by the co-producer making the minority financial contribution shall include at least one script writer or dialogue writer, one assistant director or other important artistic or technical member of the team and, preferably, one actor in a leading role and one actor in a supporting role, or failing this, two actors in important roles, all being nationals of the minority co-producer country, nationality being understood as defined in the preceding sub-section.

(3) Actors or authors who do not fulfill the requirements of sub-section (1) of this Article may participate, in exceptional cases and if the nature of the film so requires, by agreement of the competent authorities of the Contracting Parties.

(4) All laboratory work, recording, post-synchronization and mixing shall be carried out within the area of application of this Agreement.

(5) Studio shooting and location shooting shall take place within the area of application of this Agreement but any of the location shooting may be permitted by the competent authorities of the Contracting Parties to take place outside the area of application of this Agreement if any of the technical aspects of the production of the action of the film so requires.

(6) Two final versions shall be made of the co-produced film, one in German and the other in French or English. The versions may include dialogues in another language if the script requires it.


(1) The co-producers shall decide jointly on the use of the original negative (picture and sound), regardless of where the negative is kept. Each of the co-producers shall be entitled to a duplicate negative in his own language. The making of a duplicate negative for a third version shall be subject to the approval of both co-producers.

(2) In principle, the development of the negative shall be done in a laboratory of the majority country, as well as the processing of copies for distribution in that country. Copies required for exploitation in the country of the minority co-producer shall be made in a laboratory in that country. Each co-producer shall be entitled to make the necessary copies for his own market. Any departure from this principle must be justified by technical reasons.


(1) In principle, receipts shall be allocated in proportion to the financial contribution of each co-producer.

(2) Subject to the approval of the competent authorities, this allocation may consist in a sharing of the receipts, or a division of territory, or a combination of both.

(3) In principle, the majority co-producer shall be responsible for the export of co-produced films. Should difficulties arise in a particular country, the co-producer with the best possibility of arranging for export to that country shall assume this responsibility. Each export contract concluded by a producer shall require the approval of the other in accordance with the conditions and time limits laid down in the co-production contract.


(1) Title credits and advertisement material for films co-produced under this Agreement shall indicate that the film is a co-production between the two countries.

(2) Unless the co-producers agree otherwise, a co-produced film shall be shown at film festivals as an entry of the majority co-producer or, if the financial contributions are equal, by the co-producer who provides the director.


(1) The competent authorities shall, within the scope of this Agreement, accept as co-productions, films which are to be produced jointly by producers from Canada, the Federal Republic of Germany and from countries to which either of the two is bound by co-production agreements; in such cases, the provisions of Article IV (1) and Article V of this Agreement shall apply mutatis mutandis.

(2) The financial contribution of a minority co-producer made in a film pursuant to sub-section (1) of this Article may be reduced to twenty (20) per cent. In such cases, his artistic and technical contributions must meet the requirements of Article V (2) of this Agreement.


(1) The co-production of short films may be approved by the competent authorities after study of each proposal.

(2) In the case of such films, the production costs must be shared equally. One artistic team member must be provided by each of the two countries.


Within the framework of their respective national legislation, each Contracting Party shall facilitate the entry into and temporary residence in its territory of technical and artistic personnel of the other Contracting Party as well as the granting of working permits as required.


Applications for approval of a co-production shall be submitted to the com­petent authorities in accordance with the rules of procedure attached to this Agreement.


The competent authorities shall inform each other about all matters concerning the granting, refusal, modification or cancellation of approvals of co-productions.


Approval of a co-production by the competent authorities shall in no way be binding upon them in respect of the granting of a license to show the film publicly.


(1) There shall be an overall balance in the artistic, technical and financial contributions of the Contracting Parties.

(2) The Joint Commission referred to in Article XVII of this Agreement shall determine whether this balance has been maintained and shall decide what measures are necessary in order to correct any imbalance.



The Contracting Parties affirm their desire to promote by all available means the distribution and exploitation in their respective countries of films from the other country.



(1) A Joint Commission shall be established, consisting of representatives from the government and film industry of both countries to monitor and facilitate the implementation of this Agreement and recommend changes if necessary.

(2) While this Agreement is in effect, the Joint Commission shall meet every two years, alternately in the Federal Republic of Germany and in Canada. A meeting may also be convened at the request of either Contracting Party, especially in the event of an important change in the legislation or regulations in the film industry of either Contracting Party.


This Agreement shall also apply to Land Berlin, provided that the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany does not make a contrary declaration to the Government of Canada within three months of the date of entry into force of this Agreement.


(1) This Agreement shall enter into force the day on which the Contracting Parties have notified each other of the completion of the procedure required by their national law for giving effect to this Agreement.

(2) This Agreement shall remain in force for two years and thereafter it shall be extended for successive periods of one year unless one or the other Contracting Party gives written notice of termination at least three months before its expiry.

(3) Films on which principal photography has commenced after March 1, 1977 and before the entry into force of this Agreement shall also be accorded the benefits of Article II of this Agreement, provided that they comply with the other stipulations of this Agreement and are approved by the competent authorities as co-production films on application which shall be submitted within six weeks of the entry into force of this Agreement.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the undersigned, being duly authorized thereto by their respective Governments, have signed this Agreement.

DONE in two copies at Ottawa this 30th day of May 1978, in the English, French and German languages, each version being equally authentic.

John Roberts


Hildegard Hamm-Bruecher



Applications for co-production benefits for a film must be submitted simultaneously to both competent authorities at least four (4) weeks before shooting begins. The competent authority of the majority co-producer shall, in principle, communi­cate its proposal to the competent authority of the minority co-producer within twenty (20) days of the submission of the complete documentation as described below. The competent authority of the minority co-producer shall, in principle, communicate its decision in turn within seven (7) days.

Documentation submitted in support of an application shall consist of the following items, drafted in German in the case of the Federal Republic of Germany and in French or English in the case of Canada:

1. the script, along with a three-page summary;

2. a document providing proof that the film rights have been legally acquired or, failing this, proof that a valid option has been obtained;

3. the co-production contract (one signed copy and three certified copies); the contract shall include:

(a) the title of the film or the working title;

(b) the name of the responsible producer;

(c) the name of the script writer or, in the case of a literary work, the name of the adapter;

(d) the name of the director (substitution clause for his replacement if necessary, is possible); where possible, the name of the leading actors;

(e) estimated costs of production and respective shares of the producers thereof;

(f) allocation of proceeds;

(g) the respective share of the two producers in any additional costs; in principle, such shares shall be proportional to their respective contributions, although the share of the minority producer may be limited to a lower percentage or to fixed amount;

(h) the date of commencement of principal photography and the estimated duration of shooting (for both location and studio shooting);

(i) the name of the holder of any distribution rights;

(j) a clause stipulating that the majority producer shall take out an insurance policy covering “all production risks” and “all negative risks”;

4. detailed estimate of costs (in duplicate);

5. the distribution contract, if already concluded;

6. the production schedule;

7. a list of the technical and artistic personnel, including their nationalities and in the case of actors, their roles, in triplicate signed by the Contracting Parties.

The competent authorities may demand any further documentation and all other additional information deemed necessary for their assessment of the project. Amendments to the original contract including the replacement of a co-producer, may be effected. They must be submitted for approval to the competent authorities before the film is completed.

The replacement of a co-producer or holder of any distribution rights may be allowed only in exceptional cases and for the reasons declared valid by the competent authorities.

The competent authorities shall inform each other of their decisions, providing in each case copies of their application documents.

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