The DGA Credits Department reviews paid advertising and screen credit submissions for Guild-covered feature films and television programs to ensure compliance with credit obligations under the Basic Agreement (“BA”) and the Freelance Live & Tape Television Agreement (“FLTTA”). Credit is an important aspect of a DGA-covered employee’s compensation. The credit provisions in the BA and FLTTA set forth minimum requirements, and any DGA-covered employee has the right to negotiate for credits in excess of the minimums.
The only acceptable form of the Director’s credit on screen and in paid advertising is “Directed by.” Use of the word “Director,” or any derivation thereof (e.g., “Direction”), may not be accorded to any individual other than a Director, Assistant Directors, Director of Photography, and Art Directors.
In addition to screen and paid advertising credit, a Director must also be accorded credit on ancillary materials associated with the project (e.g., DVDs). In any formal publicity released where the name of the picture is mentioned, the Director, if known, must also be mentioned.
Many Directors choose to place a signature credit on their work commonly referred to as a “Film by” or “possessory” credit. A possessory credit may not be accorded to a Director on his or her first feature film, unless the Director was responsible for bringing to the Employer the literary property upon which the film is based and the Director performed substantial services in development of the property.
The final form of main and end title credits for feature films and television programs must be submitted to the Guild sufficiently in advance of the company shooting the credits for compliance with the BA and FLTTA. In the event of a dispute as to the person to be accorded directorial credit, the DGA is the sole arbiter of the final credit determination.
It is important to the DGA to support the creative vision of the Director and the DGA will consider waivers of some, but not other, screen and advertising credit requirements on a case-by-case basis. It is important that all waiver requests be submitted as early as possible and there is no guarantee of their approval.
Please contact the DGA Credits Department with any questions relating to credits.