Does Sony Pictures own your art portfolio?
Sony Pictures (“SPE”) have posted jobs on their site for storyboard artists and visual development artists, but you might want to read the terms closely before you apply. Mark Mayerson did, and his analysis suggests you may want to look elsewhere for work:
[…] Sony takes ownership of your portfolio material when you apply for the job. If you are submitting samples of work you have done for other companies, Sony wants you to assign the rights to them. You clearly don’t have the authority to do that for work you don’t own, so that means that you are not legally allowed to show Sony work you’ve done for other companies. Sort of defeats the purpose of a submission portfolio, doesn’t it? What’s clearly disturbing though, is that any original work in your portfolio becomes their property. This does not depend on whether they hire you or not, they get ownership because you applied.
Is Mark overreacting? Well, it’s hard to take that view when SPE’s own agreement says cringeworthy things like:
…any intellectual property or materials […] shall become the sole property of SPE to the fullest extent permitted by applicable law and will be considered “works made for hire” or “commissioned works” owned by SPE.
Or this little gem:
SPE […] shall be entitled to the unrestricted use of Submissions for any purpose, commercial or otherwise, without acknowledgment or additional compensation to you.
What the what now?? Maybe someone from Sony Pictures can speak up to clarify this?
(Thanks to James Provost for this tip!)