Dublin Declaration – Code of Practice – 14th November 2003




Directors perform the primary role in the creation of an audiovisual work. While the collaborative process is at the heart of all production, the Director has the creative responsibility for the artistic integrity of the work and accordingly should be recognized as an author in all jurisdictions. The history of cinema and television shows that the best works are produced when Directors are afforded conditions which enable them to purse their vision to the full.


This document sets out the minimum standards that our Organisations consider essential and believe should be accepted wherever our members work. Directors everywhere have the right to organise and collectively bargain to protect themselves and to advance their art. We are pledged to use our resources to ensure that the Director’s central role in the creative process is protected throughout the world.


Part One – Creative Rights


Role of the Director


As the primary creator of the audiovisual work, the Director has the responsibility for inspiring a team of creative collaborators from pre-production through to final print.


The Director plays the primary role in creative decisions at all stages of preparation, production, and post-production of the work.


The Director’s function is to mold all of the creative elements of the work into a cohesive, aesthetic whole.


One Director to a Film


There can be only one person assigned to be the Director of a work at any given time, apart from exceptional bona fide co-directing teams, as recognized by the appropriate Directors’ Organisation.


Replacement of a Director


In rare circumstances it may be necessary to replace a Director in the course of preparation or production. However, the Director shall not be replaced by someone already assigned to the production other than in an emergency.


A Director shall only be replaced by another qualified Director.


A Director shall not be removed from the post-production of the work.




As best practice the Director should be involved at the earliest stages of development.


The Right to Know


The Director should have full and complete disclosure of all existing artistic and creative commitments with respect to the work prior to his or her actual employment.


The story on which the audiovisual work is based, and the script, if any exists, shall be made available to the Director at the earliest possible opportunity. The Director shall be informed of all creative and essential production elements in place at the time of employment and shall have access to all relevant information on budgeting and scheduling for which the Director has responsibility.


The Director shall be informed immediately of any proposed changes to these elements.


Selection of Key Personnel


The Director’s choice of key personnel such as assistant director, second unit director, cinematographer, production designer, editor and composer should be accepted to the extent possible.




The Director shall have adequate time for preparation and rehearsal.




The Director is in creative control of shooting on the floor, set or location. All notes to actors or technicians either come from or are passed through the Director.


Dailies/Rushes Consistent with the orderly progress of photography, the Director shall see the dailies/rushes of each day’s photography within a reasonable time.


Office and Working Environment Directors need an adequate level of office support and private space in order to operate efficiently and perform their best work.




Director’s Cut


The Director shall supervise the initial assembly of sequences, and then shall have the right of first cut. The Director’s right to prepare his or her Director’s Cut is an absolute right, and no one shall be allowed to interfere with it. Sufficient time should be allowed for this process, in light of the schedule and the nature of the production. If the Director does not have Final Cut, he or she is entitled to present the Director’s Cut to the individual who has final cutting authority. Cutting behind the Director’s back is unacceptable.




The Director must be notified of the date, time and place of each post-production operation. The Director shall have the opportunity to direct looping, dubbing, scoring, special effects and any additional photography.

Previews/Test Screenings
With respect to theatrical works the Director shall be given the opportunity to participate in all test screenings and be invited to attend all previews.


Alternate Versions

It is generally desirable for audiovisual works to be released in the same version for all markets. When a work must be re-edited, the Director shall be given the opportunity to participate in the creative decisions and direct any additional material.



The Director has the right to be credited for his or her work. The Director shall receive prominent mention in advertising and publicity.


The Director shall have the right to negotiate for appropriate additional credits, including a possessory credit.

In the event that the final version of the work does not reflect the Director’s creative vision, the Director shall have the right to remove his or her name or use a pseudonym.


Part Two – Contractual and Economic Rights




The Director shall be offered a signed agreement of short form deal memo prior to commencing work.




The Director has the right to compensation that reflects the role of Director and the type of production and budget.

Directors should be encouraged to negotiate the best possible arrangements but no Director should work for less than the minimum terms and conditions established by their collective bargaining organization.

Directors shall receive adequate health insurance and pension benefits.


Working Conditions


Directors shall not be required to work hours that are injurious to their or others’ health or safety.


Travel and Expenses


The Director’s travel and accommodations shall be no less favorable than those of any other senior production personnel. No Director should ever be out of pocket for expenses incurred.




If a Director is replaced for reasons other than breach of contract or Force Majeure, the contract shall be paid in full.


Use Rights


Directors are entitled to ongoing equitable remuneration for the re-use of their work.

Directors have the right to participate fully in any statutory schemes that provide remuneration for authors, without waiver or transferability.


Directors’ Organisations have the right to collect statutory remuneration on behalf of their constituents.

Directors shall be compensated for the use of excerpts or clips of their work in another work.


Contract Enforcement


Directors’ Organisations shall have the authority to enforce the terms of those contracts that cover their members’ services.