Film Royalties: Classic Comedy “Trading Places”

Earn film residuals generated by the 1983 classic film Trading Places starring Dan Aykroyd and Eddie Murphy!


closing price

Auction Closed

Top Bid: Simon C

The Theoretical IRR is a formulaic guideline based on an extrapolation of the normalized, historical earnings trend of the catalog. The Theoretical IRR is not a guarantee of future performance. It should be used for comparison purposes only. Each catalog has its own risk factors and the Theoretical IRR is not based upon a specific analysis of this catalog. Click here to view the basis for all Theoretical IRR calculations.

Historic royalty income is no indication of future royalty income. Future royalty income is dependent upon future sales and licensing revenue generated by the sound recordings or compositions associated with this listing.

Starting Price: $67,500
Bidding Increment: $800
Closing Price: $140,300
End Date: Feb 13, 2019, 3:22 PM MST
Last 12 Months' Royalties: $7,988
Investment Term: Life of author + 70 years

Paramount Pictures Corporation 

Rights Included:

Gross Film Receipts 

Interests Included:


First Distribution: October 28, 2019
Distribution Frequency:


Buyer Fees:


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Opportunities to earn royalties from comedy classics do not come around often… so this listing is a rare treat. Up for bid are the residuals (film and TV royalties) generated by the beloved 1983 motion picture Trading Places starring comedy legends Dan Aykroyd and Eddie Murphy.

Officially released in 1983, Trading Places is one of Eddie Murphy’s standout films. It’s a modern take on Mark Twain's classic novel The Prince and the Pauper, where the “pauper” Murphy trades places with the “prince” Aykroyd, with supporting performances by Jamie Lee Curtis and Ralph Bellamy.

Trading Places was well-received by critics and movie-goers alike and was nominated for several awards including Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy at the 41st Golden Globe Awards. The film earned over $90 million during its theatrical run in the U.S., making it the 4th highest-grossing film of 1983, behind Flashdance, Terms of Endearment and Return of the Jedi.

And over 30 years later, Trading Places still continues to generate earnings from cable TV airings, on-demand streaming, and theatrical rebroadcasts. Over the last 10 years, this asset has generated payments averaging about $10,500/year, with the highest-earning distribution totaling over $14,000. 

In fact, the film is currently airing on the cable network IFC as well and on-demand via Amazon Prime. As the winning bidder, you will earn royalties from the rebroadcast of Trading Places all over the globe beginning in October 2019. 

Key Drivers

Film Residuals. Royalties, in film and television, go by the name “residuals” and are paid when a film or program is rebroadcast. Creatives are typically paid a large upfront fee for a film's theatrical release or a television show's first airing and are then paid residuals for any subsequent airing, including DVD release, broadcast TV syndication and new media use such as Netflix streaming.

Films and television shows, just like songs, are creative works that are protected by copyright. As such, the owners of film copyrights are entitled to royalties when their products are used. In film and television, the copyright owners are typically the producers.

What Is Being Sold?

The right to receive a share of participation payments in connection with the gross proceeds generated by the distribution of the 1983 motion picture Trading Places.


The seller has the option to repurchase the royalty share from the winning bidder, for two years after the date of sale, for 150% of the final auction price.

Matching Right

Paramount Pictures holds a matching right on any sale of this gross film receipt income. The studio will have the opportunity to match the winning bid after this auction closes. If you are the winning bidder, Paramount Pictures must first decline their matching right before you will be able to complete your purchase. This process is generally completed within 5–10 business days.

About the Royalty Distributor

Paramount Pictures Corporation (also known simply as Paramount) is an American film studio based in Hollywood, California, that has been a subsidiary of the American media conglomerate Viacom since 1994.

Founded in 1914, Paramount is the fifth oldest surviving film studio in the world and the second oldest in the U.S. The studio’s most notable franchises include The Godfather, Star Trek, The first four Indiana Jones films, Mission: Impossible, Tomb Raider, Friday the 13th, and countless others. Paramount Pictures is a member of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA). 

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