Andrew White is a partner in the firm’s Los Angeles office. He is former managing partner of the Los Angeles office and former chair of the Media and Entertainment practice group. In over 35 years as a trial lawyer, Mr. White has won jury and non-jury trials in a wide array of complicated business disputes. The General Counsel of one Fortune 100 client has publicly endorsed Mr. White as “a trial lawyer who actually tries cases.” Mr. White’s trial skills and pre-trial strategies have won huge verdicts, as well as business-saving settlements, for some of America's most recognized companies and individuals. The late Johnnie Cochran, a former adversary in the courtroom, acknowledged Mr. White in a Daily Journal profile as “one of the few trial lawyers who can win big cases from both the plaintiff and defense sides of the counsel table.”
Mr. White’s courtroom victories range from protecting TV networks and film studios against copyright, trademark and defamation claims to winning numerous 8-figure jury verdicts for clients as diverse as an investment banker, a motion picture CEO, real estate developers, and a financial consultant to motion picture companies. His experience extends from prosecuting claims over multi-million dollar entertainment contracts to defending large corporations against treble-damage antitrust claims to protecting individual clients in complex commercial disputes.
In addition to teaching civil procedure as an adjunct instructor at Loyola Law School, Mr. White has been a guest lecturer on copyright and trademark law at his alma mater, Stanford Law School. Mr. White is a frequent speaker before bar groups and continuing legal education seminars, and he has also authored a number of articles regarding First Amendment, trademark, copyright, and other commercial litigation issues.
Defeating defamation claims against a TV network and a writer/producer of an extremely popular TV series, Mr. White won an appeal that strengthened the First Amendment protections for TV and motion picture producers who are attacked in defamation lawsuits.. Tamkin v. CBS Entertainment, 193 Cal.App.4th 133 (2011).
A jury verdict of $67 million in favor of Mr. White’s client was premised on strategic decisions Mr. White made immediately after the client severed ties with his employer of 25 years and started a competing business. Gundlach v. TCW, cross-complaint in Los Angeles Superior Court case no. BC 429385 (jury verdict dated Sept. 16, 2011).
Defeating a $45 million dollar lawsuit against the founder of an iconic fashion brand, Mr. White won summary judgment over claims growing out of his client’s purchase of a minority shareholder’s stock in a privately-held corporation. Siskin v. Koral, Los Angeles Superior Court case no. BC 462606 (order dated April 26, 2012).
Winning summary judgment against an “idea submission” claim, Mr. White protected the producer and broadcaster of one of the most popular and critically acclaimed TV dramas of the past decade. Spinner v. ABC, Los Angeles Superior Court case no. BC 417577 (order dated Nov. 16, 2011).
Defending a major studio and one of the world’s best-known motion picture directors and producers, Mr. White secured a 2010 summary judgment in the Southern District of New York, dismissing claims that his clients’ movie infringed the copyright of a short story upon which a 1954 classic film was based. Abend Trust v. Spielberg, Paramount Pictures, et al., 2010 U.S. District LEXIS 99010 (S.D.N.Y. Sept. 21, 2010).
In defense of one of America’s leading news organizations, Mr. White won the dismissal of a high-profile defamation lawsuit by a famous televangelist who challenged a national news broadcast highlighting the extreme wealth he has amassed; that dismissal was largely affirmed on appeal. Price v. Stossel, ABC, et al., 620 F.3d 992 (9th Cir. 2010).
Mr. White secured the dismissal of a purported class action against a national brokerage firm challenging the firm's online promotions; that dismissal, based on a novel application of the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act, was affirmed on appeal. Verdiner v. Scottrade (9th Cir., unpublished decision, 2008).
Representing a major motion picture studio and a national TV network, Mr. White won a multi-week trial disputing the allocation of the billions of dollars generated by one of the most successful situation comedies in the history of TV syndication (private trial, 2007.)
Mr. White won a motion to dismiss a multi-million dollar defamation lawsuit brought by a controversial reality TV show cast member, who objected to cable news reports that questioned her professional credentials. Ianni v. Courtroom TV, MTV., et al. (C.D. Cal., 2008).
Mr. White won two trials on behalf of the trustees of one of the largest private trusts headquartered in Los Angeles, defeating multi-million dollar claims brought by the trust's main beneficiary. (private trials, 2004 and 2005.)
Defending one of America’s most famous actors and his production company, Mr. White won a motion to dismiss a highly publicized employment discrimination claim (2007).
Mr. White defeated novel theories of copyright infringement to win the dismissal of all claims against two leading TV production companies, based on their creation and production of a popular primetime television series (2006).
Representing two major motion picture studios, along with an Oscar-nominated director and screenwriter, Mr. White secured the dismissal of both copyright and state-law claims over one of 2002's most highly-regarded films (2005).
A number of Mr. White's trial court victories have been confirmed in important appellate decisions, dating from 1982 through 2011. The legal precedents that Mr. White has forged cover a wide range of frequently-cited appellate decisions, including the following:
Tamkin v. CBS Entertainment, 193 Cal.App.4th 133 (2011) (defamation)
Price v. Stossel, ABC, et al., 620 F.3d 992 (9th Cir. 2010) (defamation)
Surfvivor Media v. Survivor Productions, 406 F.3d 625 (9th Cir. 2005) (trademark - "reverse confusion")
Sullivan v. CBS Corp., 385 F.3d 772 (7th Cir. 2004) (trademark)
CBS Broadcasting, Inc. v. California Dept.of Soc. Serv., 91 Cal. App. 4th 892,110 Cal. Rptr. 889 (2001) (news reporter access)
Wilson v. Eu, 1 Cal. 4th 707, 4 Cal. Rptr. 2d 379 (1992) (election redistricting)
Aisenson v. American Broadcasting Co., Inc., 220 Cal. App. 3d 146, 269 Cal. Rptr. 379 (1990) (defamation and privacy)
Fine v. Barry & Enright Productions, 731 F.2d 1394 (9th Cir. 1984) (antitrust)
Worldvision Enterprises, Inc. v. American Broadcasting Cos., Inc., 142 Cal. App. 3d 589, 191 Cal. Rptr. 148 (1983) (business torts)
Partee v. San Diego Chargers Football Co., 34 Cal. 3d 378, 194 Cal. Rptr. 367 (1983) (U.S. Constitutional law - "Commerce Clause")
Stein v. United Artists Corp., 691 F.2d 885 (9th Cir. 1982) (antitrust)
Honors & Awards
In recognition of his decades of service to his clients, to the community, and to the bench and bar, Mr. White is regularly named as one of America's most outstanding trial lawyers in the following publications: Top 100 Power Lawyers (Hollywood Reporter); Top 100 Super Lawyers in Southern California (Law & Politics and Los Angeles Magazine); Leading Lawyers in America (Lawdragon 3000); America's Leading Lawyers for Business (Chambers USA), and The Best Lawyers in America© (Woodward/White, Inc.) (bestlawyers.com). Mr. White was also honored recently by the Century City Bar Association of Los Angeles as the "Litigator of the Year."