Subsidiary rights include the myriad of ways an author can license a work after its initial stage production. Often times, these rights are withheld from the stage producer. They include, among other things, publishing rights, stock & amateur licensing rights, movie and television adaptations and foreign stage productions. Authors retain the copyright in their work but because a producer’s successful production may add value to an author’s copyright, a producer customarily “vests” in a specified share of an author’s subsidiary rights revenues. This grant is limited in time and nature as specified by the contract.
A producer often shares in the author’s subsidiary rights revenues from Equity Showcases and Equity Workshops. In the latter, even the cast may be granted a share. Shares are also often granted in premiering LORT theaters (perhaps more than one) and commercial producers (usually a large share).
Directors, dramaturges, actors and other non-authorial collaborators may also ask for a share of an author’s subsidiary rights revenues as well, but granting such an interest is entirely within the discretion of the author, based on the circumstances of a particular production, and is not at all customary nor recommended.
Further Reading: Understanding Subsidiary Rights; Directors At the Gates; Underlying Rights II: Movie Rights; Life of a Song; Guide to Publishing/Licensing Contracts; The Boards Abroad; The Money Flow; A Statutory Rebuff to the Idea of a “Director’s Copyright”; Subsidiary Rights Round Table: Part I; and Theater Economics.