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Where does the money come from?

All UK cinemas, including independents, for the performance of films, adverts, idents, background music/screens in auditoriums and foyers.

How are royalties calculated?

Film companies and advertising companies send us music information, known as ‘cue sheets’ or ‘consignment notes’ respectively, to establish what music is used in each production. We use this information to see which works to pay when films or cinema adverts are performed. Different types of music use in cinemas are distributed in different ways:


Money is allocated to films in proportion to their officially recorded box office receipts, then apportioned to the works listed on the film’s cue sheet in proportion to their respective durations within the film.


Screening data is collected from the largest supplier of cinema advertising in the UK, and money is apportioned to the adverts in proportion to the screenings.


No usage data is collected for showings of trailers and no money is distributed for them.


Data for cinema ident packages is agreed with individual cinema chains and distributed accordingly.

Music used in foyers and other areas

This money is added into the overall analogy for all other types of background music usage.

What is the administration rate?

View PRS for Music administration deduction rates

When do we pay?

We aim to pay royalties quarterly, as shown in this table (opens PDF in new window).

Can royalties be backdated?

Yes. You can back claim royalties up to three years after the period they should have been paid in as detailed in the schedule above. If we have not paid you correctly in a distribution you have up to three years after that distribution to let us know.

Why might I not have been paid for a cinema performance?

Is your music used in a film tracked by the UK box-office chart? We only pay royalties for cinema film showings on information received from this source. So if your music is used in a film shown only in, for example, a local arts/film festival you will not receive any royalties.

Is your music used in an advert distributed by the UK’s largest cinema advertising distributor?

We only pay royalties for adverts reported to us by the UK’s leading cinema advertising distributor.

Are you sure your music has been performed?

Contact the film/advert distributor to investigate.

Are you sure your music has been registered correctly?

Check our database

If it is in a film, have we received music information from the distributor, known as a ‘cue sheet’?

Search our cue sheets system. If we have not received a cue sheet, you should request that the distributor supplies this to us, or you can send a copy to: searchcuesheets@prsformusic.com

Please include the production ID and production title.

Paper copies can be sent to:

Search cue sheets
PRS for Music
41 Streatham High Road
SW16 1ER

If it is an advert, have we received the music information from the distributor, known as a ‘consignment note’?

This information is sometimes difficult to obtain and often incomplete. If you are able to supply it, please contact us.

Was the performance more than three months ago?

We pay cinema royalties quarterly, as detailed in the schedule above, so your work must have been performed at least three months ago for you to receive a royalty. If information was received late, you will receive payment in the next available distribution.

Need more help?

If after checking the above you still haven’t received a payment you think you should already have had, please contact us.

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