Media and Entertainment
Media and Entertainment
The Media and Entertainment attorneys at Kelley Drye & Warren LLP represent clients in complex entertainment disputes and lawsuits in virtually every facet of the industry—copyright and trademark, idea submission, defamation, privacy, right of publicity, talent agreement, distribution/financing and profit participation, among many others.

Representing plaintiffs and defendants—individuals, production companies, television networks, movie studios and entertainment technology companies—our trial attorneys are known for their record of winning and resolving disputes arising from the creation and exploitation of creative works across all media.

Through summary judgment and other pretrial motions, we frequently resolve disputes without ever exposing our clients to the risk and expense of trial.  When it is warranted, our greatest strength lies in our ability to win business disputes at trial.

In addition, Kelley Drye is at the forefront of emerging spaces—new legal issues stemming from the digital evolution in the industry related to virtual reality and augmented reality, as well as First Amendment issues as they relate to online speech.

Known for being tough litigators, experienced, forward-thinking and effective, our prominent roster of clients includes top-tier industry names such as Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Brothers, The Walt Disney Company, American Broadcasting Company (ABC), Home Box Office, The CW Network, NBC Universal, CBS Broadcasting Inc., Paramount Pictures Corporation, Roseanne Barr, Elizabeth Taylor Trust, Langley Productions and WME│IMG.

We specialize in:

Media and First Amendment–Among the many types of First Amendment claims we have defended are defamation lawsuits against both local and national news organizations, invasion of privacy claims against news-gathering journalists, claims for misappropriation of name, likeness and voice, and claims based upon speech. 

The rise of blogging and social media has generated an increase in defamation lawsuits. We are among a handful of attorneys specializing in First Amendment, litigating matters on behalf of businesses and individuals whose reputations have been defamed online by anonymous commentators. 

In order to avoid lawsuits, Kelley Drye provides advice to those engaged in news gathering and production.

We’ve also represented a number of artists, TV production companies and investigative journalists involving First Amendment rights and privacy issues.  

Copyright and Trademark–Our attorneys provide both strategic and litigation-related advice to maximize legal protection for our clients’ creative works and to minimize exposure to copyright infringement claims from others.  We focus on developing resolution strategies to avoid litigation when possible and to protect the commercial potential of our clients’ intellectual property.

Fully conversant with all trademark-related matters, our attorneys assist clients with the protection and enforcement of their trademarks including infringement actions and claims.  When negotiation leads to litigation, we move quickly to protect our clients’ brands.

Right of Publicity and Misappropriation of Likeness–Individuals have rights regarding the commercial use of their name, image, likeness or other aspects of their identity. When violations to a right of publicity occur, our proven litigators devise actionable strategies that result in the right outcomes for our clients. Conversely, many individuals mistakenly believe that they have the right to control all aspects of media regarding their name and likeness. Our litigators often defend motion picture studios, production companies and others involved in creating works regarding people of historical significance.

Many times issues related to right of publicity and misappropriation of likeness result in relation to advertising, endorsements or social media. When necessary, our attorneys tap into the expertise of our advertising and marketing practice group to ensure a favorable outcome for our clients.

Talent DisputesOur attorneys are frequently called upon to represent, advise and assist clients when talent disputes arise. Whether simple or complex, involving only a single individual or many individuals and entities, we successfully resolve disputes without the need for lengthy proceedings even though we’re fully prepared to take disputes through trial and private hearings when necessary.

From informal negotiations to courtroom or arbitration proceedings, for over three decades we have resolved talent-related disputes quickly and efficiently so that our clients can focus on their core business – creating, producing and distributing motion pictures, television programming, music and other products.

Idea Submission Claims–Our attorneys are experienced in idea submission claims. The breadth of our practice, and the depth of our talent, is reflected in the many victories and favorable resolutions we have achieved in publicly filed lawsuits based on claims of idea theft.

Virtual Reality–As new legal issues have come to the forefront with the advent of emerging technologies, our attorneys have been on the leading edge of this new and evolving media technology space – apps, on-demand streaming, virtual reality games and venues – advising clients on compliance rights, intellectual property concerns and privacy protection.

Production, Distribution and Financing DisputesAs many of our clients engage in the production, distribution and financing of motion pictures and television programming, we are frequently retained to resolve disputes that arise from those business operations.  With expertise and understanding of the nuances of motion picture and television finance and distribution, we assist clients in resolving disputes, whether in pre-litigation negotiations or through a trial on the merits.

First Amendment Defense

  • Won a motion under California’s anti-SLAPP Statute to secure the early dismissal of a defamation action arising from a national TV news report broadcast on two of America’s leading news programs; subsequently, we also won an award of over $170,000 in legal expenses that the clients incurred in defending against the defamation lawsuit.

  • In a news-gathering and publication case related to the death of actor Marlon Brando, we secured a reversal in the California Court of Appeal of a lower court’s denial of the defendants’ anti-SLAPP motion, and confirmed that the widespread public interest requirement in the anti-SLAPP statute is satisfied where there is public interest in the subject matter of First Amendment–related activity, regardless of whether there is an independent public interest with the individuals involved.

  • Representing the parent corporation and its broadcast and cable network subsidiaries, we successfully used the anti-SLAPP statute to obtain the dismissal of the plaintiff’s defamation and other claims arising from the broadcast of a news magazine story about reality programming on one of the cable networks.

  • Protected a Los Angeles television station against defamation and invasion of privacy claims, securing summary judgment against a sitting Superior Court judge who disputed the accuracy of a news report critical of his judicial performance; the California Court of Appeal affirmed that summary judgment on appeal, in a frequently cited decision.

  • Represented Oracle in multiple cases regarding defamatory statements anonymously posted online about Oracle employees.  Our attorneys tracked down the poster and were able to cease defamatory comments.

  • Protecting actress/comedian Roseanne Barr against invasion of privacy and intentional infliction of emotional distress claims, we secured a motion to dismiss, having successfully argued that our client was acting well within her First Amendment rights to express her views.  We argued and won the motion for summary judgment on July 28, 2015.

  • Represented Michael Kors against NahaDaily.com, an entertainment blog that wrote defamatory statements about Kors.  We demanded that the statements be taken down, and NahaDaily.com complied.

  • Represented T Group Productions and TruTV in a lawsuit alleging defamation, harassment and breach of contract in connection with the reality television show “Storage Hunters.”  We moved the court to dismiss the entire lawsuit pursuant to Section 425.16 of the California Code of Civil Procedure—the California anti-SLAPP statute.  We won the anti-SLAPP motion and the case settled confidentially.  We also represented T Group in a wrongful termination lawsuit, which settled confidentially.
 

Copyright and Trademark

  • Represented music producer in a copyright infringement lawsuit in which the plaintiff alleged copyright infringement in connection with a famous Michael Jackson recording.  The Federal Court in Los Angeles dismissed the lawsuit with no payment by the defendant. 

  • Represented an American actor in a copyright infringement claim in which he claimed a fashion photographer used a photograph in an unauthorized manner, without permission.

  • Represented a Los Angeles sightseeing tour bus company in connection with a trademark dispute regarding what can be on the buses. We negotiated a settlement.

  • Defended a major studio, a highly honored producer and several other defendants against a copyright lawsuit in New York Federal Court, obtaining summary judgment against claims that a recent hit movie infringed the copyright of a short story upon which a 1954 classic film was based.

  • Defended more than 30 named defendants, including a major motion picture studio and three well-known actresses, securing the dismissal of numerous copyright and RICO claims based on the release and distribution of a successful romantic comedy.  Summary judgment and award of attorneys’ fees were affirmed by the Ninth Circuit.

  • Protected the release of a premium cable documentary, defeating both an application for temporary restraining order and a motion for preliminary injunction based on claims of copyright infringement, paving the way for the film’s timely release and forcing the dismissal of the action.

  • Defeated a motion for preliminary injunction that was sought, based on alleged infringement of the plaintiff’s trademark, to prevent the distribution of a popular reality television program on a prominent cable network.

  • Secured the dismissal, with prejudice, of a copyright infringement claim against a leading television cooking show.  We persuaded the district court to issue groundbreaking rulings that (1) copyright infringement claims may be dismissed at the pleading stage based on lack of substantial similarity; (2) no amount of access can establish actionable copying if the works are not substantially similar; and (3) judicial notice is appropriate to establish that allegedly copied elements are generic and therefore not copyright-protected.

  • Defended a major motion picture studio in a copyright infringement action growing out of a hit 1980s motion picture.  We secured the dismissal, with prejudice, of all claims, and successfully defended that dismissal on appeal in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

  • Defended the broadcast network and the merchandise distributor of a pioneering reality television show against a trademark lawsuit filed in Hawaii, obtaining summary judgment against “reverse confusion” claims brought by a Hawaiian company that marketed similar products under a similar trademark; that trial court victory was affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

  • Secured the early dismissal, with prejudice, of copyright and accounting claims against the producers, distributor and director of one of the most financially successful films of 2002.

  • Defended the world-famous trademark of a Los Angeles radio station, securing a TRO and preliminary injunction to prevent a Palm Springs radio station from using a confusingly similar name; the trademark injunction was unanimously affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
 

Idea Submission Claims

  • Secured full dismissal in a case for a large studio that was sued based on a claim that the television show SMASH was a rip-off of the plaintiff’s ideas.

  • Represented producers of one of the most popular television shows in history in connection with an idea submission claim based on a script that had been written decades earlier.

  • Defended major motion picture studio in four idea submissions claims over the same hit film about four men going through a mid-life crisis.

  • Defended a prominent actor, television studio and other defendants in a copyright infringement action concerning a television series in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, obtaining judgment dismissing the action at the pleading stage; affirmed by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.  Also obtained dismissal of the case when the plaintiff later filed similar claims in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

  • Defended multiple studios and individual defendants in several idea submission and copyright claims regarding one of the top-grossing films of 2007.

  • The California Court of Appeal upheld the summary judgment that our lawyers obtained against a plaintiff who claimed that a studio’s 2005 hit movie was based on an idea that the plaintiff had “pitched” to a studio executive at an industry event.  Both the appellate and trial courts agreed that any similarities between the plaintiff’s idea and the film were not substantial enough to support an idea submission claim.

  • Secured the early dismissal, with prejudice, on nine of the plaintiffs’ ten-idea submission-based claims related to a broadcast miniseries.

  • Defended an Oscar-nominated director, production studios and others involved in creating a top-grossing motion picture, obtaining the dismissal of all state law claims arising from an idea submission claim and ultimately secured the dismissal with prejudice of the only remaining claim for copyright infringement.

  • Represented the producer of a motion picture based on a graphic novel, securing summary adjudication in the client’s favor against numerous claims based on theft-of-idea theories, including breach of contract, breach of confidential relationship, breach of fiduciary duty, and fraud.

  • After securing federal court orders dismissing all of a plaintiff’s federal copyright claims and most of her state law claims based on the creation of a successful cable television series, we secured a favorable settlement on the eve of a further motion to dismiss plaintiff’s surviving “idea submission” claims.
 

Production, Distribution and Financing

  • On behalf of CBS Broadcasting we sued and successfully negotiated a settlement and payment plan against Blue Tax, which purchased $200,000 in advertising and refused to pay.  We currently represent CBS in another case, in which they are suing Three Lions Entertainment for purchasing $5 million worth of advertising on a television show and failing to pay. 

  • Represented WME│IMG regarding threatened claims for breach of fiduciary duty in connection with the Ben Affleck movie The Accountant. The plaintiff claimed that they originated the movie idea.  The case settled in April 2016.

  • Represented Manny Film LLC in connection with a documentary they produced about professional boxer Manny Pacquiao.  As part of Pacquiao and Manny Film’s agreement, Pacquiao was to refrain from producing other documentaries.  When Manny Films discovered that Pacquiao was considering producing another documentary, we stepped in and were able to prevent Pacquiao from creating other films.

  • Defended two television studios against a claim by two talent agencies for an increased percentage of the revenue generated by the off-network distribution (syndication) of a hit television series.  Following a multi-week private trial before a retired Justice of the California Supreme Court, our clients won a confidential decision and the dispute thereafter was settled favorably.

  • Defended one of the leading children’s television programming producers in the world in a complex array of lawsuits—in federal court, state court, and before the American Arbitration Association—all arising out of the worldwide distribution and merchandising of derivative works (including an animated TV series) based on a doll made famous in the early 1990s.  An arbitration trial spanning four months in 2009 concluded with an interim arbitration award in our client’s favor, prompting a confidential settlement and the dismissal of all pending proceedings.

  • Successfully defended a major motion picture studio in connection with a profits participation dispute with a former showrunner of a hit television series.

  • Successfully defended a major motion picture studio in connection with a financing dispute regarding a slate of several films.

  • Represented a film producer in two lawsuits against fellow producers over the parties’ agreements regarding the development and production of several motion picture projects.  The disputes were litigated both in a JAMS arbitration and in a federal court lawsuit, and on the eve of the arbitration trial, all the disputes were settled confidentially to the parties’ mutual satisfaction.

  • On behalf of an independent motion picture studio, we secured partial summary judgment and subsequently a defense verdict against claims of fraud, breach of contract and breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing with respect to the financing, production and distribution of two motion pictures.

  • Secured a $1.6 million verdict on behalf of an independent motion picture studio in an arbitration against a co-producer relating to the production and distribution of a motion picture.  On counterclaims relating to accounting and profit participation, we won a complete defense verdict for our clients.
 
 

Overview

The Media and Entertainment attorneys at Kelley Drye & Warren LLP represent clients in complex entertainment disputes and lawsuits in virtually every facet of the industry—copyright and trademark, idea submission, defamation, privacy, right of publicity, talent agreement, distribution/financing and profit participation, among many others.

Representing plaintiffs and defendants—individuals, production companies, television networks, movie studios and entertainment technology companies—our trial attorneys are known for their record of winning and resolving disputes arising from the creation and exploitation of creative works across all media.

Through summary judgment and other pretrial motions, we frequently resolve disputes without ever exposing our clients to the risk and expense of trial.  When it is warranted, our greatest strength lies in our ability to win business disputes at trial.

In addition, Kelley Drye is at the forefront of emerging spaces—new legal issues stemming from the digital evolution in the industry related to virtual reality and augmented reality, as well as First Amendment issues as they relate to online speech.

Known for being tough litigators, experienced, forward-thinking and effective, our prominent roster of clients includes top-tier industry names such as Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Brothers, The Walt Disney Company, American Broadcasting Company (ABC), Home Box Office, The CW Network, NBC Universal, CBS Broadcasting Inc., Paramount Pictures Corporation, Roseanne Barr, Elizabeth Taylor Trust, Langley Productions and WME│IMG.

We specialize in:

Media and First Amendment–Among the many types of First Amendment claims we have defended are defamation lawsuits against both local and national news organizations, invasion of privacy claims against news-gathering journalists, claims for misappropriation of name, likeness and voice, and claims based upon speech. 

The rise of blogging and social media has generated an increase in defamation lawsuits. We are among a handful of attorneys specializing in First Amendment, litigating matters on behalf of businesses and individuals whose reputations have been defamed online by anonymous commentators. 

In order to avoid lawsuits, Kelley Drye provides advice to those engaged in news gathering and production.

We’ve also represented a number of artists, TV production companies and investigative journalists involving First Amendment rights and privacy issues.  

Copyright and Trademark–Our attorneys provide both strategic and litigation-related advice to maximize legal protection for our clients’ creative works and to minimize exposure to copyright infringement claims from others.  We focus on developing resolution strategies to avoid litigation when possible and to protect the commercial potential of our clients’ intellectual property.

Fully conversant with all trademark-related matters, our attorneys assist clients with the protection and enforcement of their trademarks including infringement actions and claims.  When negotiation leads to litigation, we move quickly to protect our clients’ brands.

Right of Publicity and Misappropriation of Likeness–Individuals have rights regarding the commercial use of their name, image, likeness or other aspects of their identity. When violations to a right of publicity occur, our proven litigators devise actionable strategies that result in the right outcomes for our clients. Conversely, many individuals mistakenly believe that they have the right to control all aspects of media regarding their name and likeness. Our litigators often defend motion picture studios, production companies and others involved in creating works regarding people of historical significance.

Many times issues related to right of publicity and misappropriation of likeness result in relation to advertising, endorsements or social media. When necessary, our attorneys tap into the expertise of our advertising and marketing practice group to ensure a favorable outcome for our clients.

Talent DisputesOur attorneys are frequently called upon to represent, advise and assist clients when talent disputes arise. Whether simple or complex, involving only a single individual or many individuals and entities, we successfully resolve disputes without the need for lengthy proceedings even though we’re fully prepared to take disputes through trial and private hearings when necessary.

From informal negotiations to courtroom or arbitration proceedings, for over three decades we have resolved talent-related disputes quickly and efficiently so that our clients can focus on their core business – creating, producing and distributing motion pictures, television programming, music and other products.

Idea Submission Claims–Our attorneys are experienced in idea submission claims. The breadth of our practice, and the depth of our talent, is reflected in the many victories and favorable resolutions we have achieved in publicly filed lawsuits based on claims of idea theft.

Virtual Reality–As new legal issues have come to the forefront with the advent of emerging technologies, our attorneys have been on the leading edge of this new and evolving media technology space – apps, on-demand streaming, virtual reality games and venues – advising clients on compliance rights, intellectual property concerns and privacy protection.

Production, Distribution and Financing DisputesAs many of our clients engage in the production, distribution and financing of motion pictures and television programming, we are frequently retained to resolve disputes that arise from those business operations.  With expertise and understanding of the nuances of motion picture and television finance and distribution, we assist clients in resolving disputes, whether in pre-litigation negotiations or through a trial on the merits.

Experience

First Amendment Defense

  • Won a motion under California’s anti-SLAPP Statute to secure the early dismissal of a defamation action arising from a national TV news report broadcast on two of America’s leading news programs; subsequently, we also won an award of over $170,000 in legal expenses that the clients incurred in defending against the defamation lawsuit.

  • In a news-gathering and publication case related to the death of actor Marlon Brando, we secured a reversal in the California Court of Appeal of a lower court’s denial of the defendants’ anti-SLAPP motion, and confirmed that the widespread public interest requirement in the anti-SLAPP statute is satisfied where there is public interest in the subject matter of First Amendment–related activity, regardless of whether there is an independent public interest with the individuals involved.

  • Representing the parent corporation and its broadcast and cable network subsidiaries, we successfully used the anti-SLAPP statute to obtain the dismissal of the plaintiff’s defamation and other claims arising from the broadcast of a news magazine story about reality programming on one of the cable networks.

  • Protected a Los Angeles television station against defamation and invasion of privacy claims, securing summary judgment against a sitting Superior Court judge who disputed the accuracy of a news report critical of his judicial performance; the California Court of Appeal affirmed that summary judgment on appeal, in a frequently cited decision.

  • Represented Oracle in multiple cases regarding defamatory statements anonymously posted online about Oracle employees.  Our attorneys tracked down the poster and were able to cease defamatory comments.

  • Protecting actress/comedian Roseanne Barr against invasion of privacy and intentional infliction of emotional distress claims, we secured a motion to dismiss, having successfully argued that our client was acting well within her First Amendment rights to express her views.  We argued and won the motion for summary judgment on July 28, 2015.

  • Represented Michael Kors against NahaDaily.com, an entertainment blog that wrote defamatory statements about Kors.  We demanded that the statements be taken down, and NahaDaily.com complied.

  • Represented T Group Productions and TruTV in a lawsuit alleging defamation, harassment and breach of contract in connection with the reality television show “Storage Hunters.”  We moved the court to dismiss the entire lawsuit pursuant to Section 425.16 of the California Code of Civil Procedure—the California anti-SLAPP statute.  We won the anti-SLAPP motion and the case settled confidentially.  We also represented T Group in a wrongful termination lawsuit, which settled confidentially.
 

Copyright and Trademark

  • Represented music producer in a copyright infringement lawsuit in which the plaintiff alleged copyright infringement in connection with a famous Michael Jackson recording.  The Federal Court in Los Angeles dismissed the lawsuit with no payment by the defendant. 

  • Represented an American actor in a copyright infringement claim in which he claimed a fashion photographer used a photograph in an unauthorized manner, without permission.

  • Represented a Los Angeles sightseeing tour bus company in connection with a trademark dispute regarding what can be on the buses. We negotiated a settlement.

  • Defended a major studio, a highly honored producer and several other defendants against a copyright lawsuit in New York Federal Court, obtaining summary judgment against claims that a recent hit movie infringed the copyright of a short story upon which a 1954 classic film was based.

  • Defended more than 30 named defendants, including a major motion picture studio and three well-known actresses, securing the dismissal of numerous copyright and RICO claims based on the release and distribution of a successful romantic comedy.  Summary judgment and award of attorneys’ fees were affirmed by the Ninth Circuit.

  • Protected the release of a premium cable documentary, defeating both an application for temporary restraining order and a motion for preliminary injunction based on claims of copyright infringement, paving the way for the film’s timely release and forcing the dismissal of the action.

  • Defeated a motion for preliminary injunction that was sought, based on alleged infringement of the plaintiff’s trademark, to prevent the distribution of a popular reality television program on a prominent cable network.

  • Secured the dismissal, with prejudice, of a copyright infringement claim against a leading television cooking show.  We persuaded the district court to issue groundbreaking rulings that (1) copyright infringement claims may be dismissed at the pleading stage based on lack of substantial similarity; (2) no amount of access can establish actionable copying if the works are not substantially similar; and (3) judicial notice is appropriate to establish that allegedly copied elements are generic and therefore not copyright-protected.

  • Defended a major motion picture studio in a copyright infringement action growing out of a hit 1980s motion picture.  We secured the dismissal, with prejudice, of all claims, and successfully defended that dismissal on appeal in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

  • Defended the broadcast network and the merchandise distributor of a pioneering reality television show against a trademark lawsuit filed in Hawaii, obtaining summary judgment against “reverse confusion” claims brought by a Hawaiian company that marketed similar products under a similar trademark; that trial court victory was affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

  • Secured the early dismissal, with prejudice, of copyright and accounting claims against the producers, distributor and director of one of the most financially successful films of 2002.

  • Defended the world-famous trademark of a Los Angeles radio station, securing a TRO and preliminary injunction to prevent a Palm Springs radio station from using a confusingly similar name; the trademark injunction was unanimously affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
 

Idea Submission Claims

  • Secured full dismissal in a case for a large studio that was sued based on a claim that the television show SMASH was a rip-off of the plaintiff’s ideas.

  • Represented producers of one of the most popular television shows in history in connection with an idea submission claim based on a script that had been written decades earlier.

  • Defended major motion picture studio in four idea submissions claims over the same hit film about four men going through a mid-life crisis.

  • Defended a prominent actor, television studio and other defendants in a copyright infringement action concerning a television series in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, obtaining judgment dismissing the action at the pleading stage; affirmed by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.  Also obtained dismissal of the case when the plaintiff later filed similar claims in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

  • Defended multiple studios and individual defendants in several idea submission and copyright claims regarding one of the top-grossing films of 2007.

  • The California Court of Appeal upheld the summary judgment that our lawyers obtained against a plaintiff who claimed that a studio’s 2005 hit movie was based on an idea that the plaintiff had “pitched” to a studio executive at an industry event.  Both the appellate and trial courts agreed that any similarities between the plaintiff’s idea and the film were not substantial enough to support an idea submission claim.

  • Secured the early dismissal, with prejudice, on nine of the plaintiffs’ ten-idea submission-based claims related to a broadcast miniseries.

  • Defended an Oscar-nominated director, production studios and others involved in creating a top-grossing motion picture, obtaining the dismissal of all state law claims arising from an idea submission claim and ultimately secured the dismissal with prejudice of the only remaining claim for copyright infringement.

  • Represented the producer of a motion picture based on a graphic novel, securing summary adjudication in the client’s favor against numerous claims based on theft-of-idea theories, including breach of contract, breach of confidential relationship, breach of fiduciary duty, and fraud.

  • After securing federal court orders dismissing all of a plaintiff’s federal copyright claims and most of her state law claims based on the creation of a successful cable television series, we secured a favorable settlement on the eve of a further motion to dismiss plaintiff’s surviving “idea submission” claims.
 

Production, Distribution and Financing

  • On behalf of CBS Broadcasting we sued and successfully negotiated a settlement and payment plan against Blue Tax, which purchased $200,000 in advertising and refused to pay.  We currently represent CBS in another case, in which they are suing Three Lions Entertainment for purchasing $5 million worth of advertising on a television show and failing to pay. 

  • Represented WME│IMG regarding threatened claims for breach of fiduciary duty in connection with the Ben Affleck movie The Accountant. The plaintiff claimed that they originated the movie idea.  The case settled in April 2016.

  • Represented Manny Film LLC in connection with a documentary they produced about professional boxer Manny Pacquiao.  As part of Pacquiao and Manny Film’s agreement, Pacquiao was to refrain from producing other documentaries.  When Manny Films discovered that Pacquiao was considering producing another documentary, we stepped in and were able to prevent Pacquiao from creating other films.

  • Defended two television studios against a claim by two talent agencies for an increased percentage of the revenue generated by the off-network distribution (syndication) of a hit television series.  Following a multi-week private trial before a retired Justice of the California Supreme Court, our clients won a confidential decision and the dispute thereafter was settled favorably.

  • Defended one of the leading children’s television programming producers in the world in a complex array of lawsuits—in federal court, state court, and before the American Arbitration Association—all arising out of the worldwide distribution and merchandising of derivative works (including an animated TV series) based on a doll made famous in the early 1990s.  An arbitration trial spanning four months in 2009 concluded with an interim arbitration award in our client’s favor, prompting a confidential settlement and the dismissal of all pending proceedings.

  • Successfully defended a major motion picture studio in connection with a profits participation dispute with a former showrunner of a hit television series.

  • Successfully defended a major motion picture studio in connection with a financing dispute regarding a slate of several films.

  • Represented a film producer in two lawsuits against fellow producers over the parties’ agreements regarding the development and production of several motion picture projects.  The disputes were litigated both in a JAMS arbitration and in a federal court lawsuit, and on the eve of the arbitration trial, all the disputes were settled confidentially to the parties’ mutual satisfaction.

  • On behalf of an independent motion picture studio, we secured partial summary judgment and subsequently a defense verdict against claims of fraud, breach of contract and breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing with respect to the financing, production and distribution of two motion pictures.

  • Secured a $1.6 million verdict on behalf of an independent motion picture studio in an arbitration against a co-producer relating to the production and distribution of a motion picture.  On counterclaims relating to accounting and profit participation, we won a complete defense verdict for our clients.
Partner
Email (310) 712-6125(310) 712-6125
Lee Brenner serves as chair of the firm’s nationwide Media and Entertainment practice group.  Lee is dedicated to getting the result his clients want, and focuses on creativity when it ...
Partner
Email (310) 712-6130(310) 712-6130
Miles Cooley serves as counsel to entertainment and media companies, major celebrities and high-profile individuals.  He negotiates and documents their deals, protects their assets at every t...
Partner
Email (310) 712-6117(310) 712-6117
Sarah Cronin’s practice includes entertainment, intellectual property, insurance recovery and complex business litigation.  Sarah represents and advises media and entertainment companies...
Partner
Email (310) 712-6170(310) 712-6170
David Fink is an experienced and proven litigator at both the trial and appellate court levels.  With more than two decades of experience in multifaceted state and federal litigation and dispu...
Partner
Email (310) 712-6120(310) 712-6120
Michael O’Connor chairs the firm’s Insurance Recovery group.  In his fourth decade of practice as a commercial litigator and trial lawyer, Michael has successfully prosecuted and ...
Partner
Email (310) 712-6110(310) 712-6110
With more than four decades of practice as a trial lawyer, Andrew White has won jury and nonjury trials in a wide array of complicated, high-stakes business disputes.  Notably, the general co...
Special Counsel
Email (202) 342-8435(202) 342-8435
Harry Glazer is special counsel in the firm's Washington, D.C. office. He focuses his practice on private equity, venture capital, corporate finance, and merger and acquisition for the enterta...
Special Counsel
Email (310) 712-6165(310) 712-6165
Cathy Lee’s practice focuses on media and entertainment litigation and consumer class action defense.  Cathy has represented entertainment studios and talent agencies on a variety of mat...
Senior Associate
Email (310) 712-6155(310) 712-6155
David Jang is an experienced litigator representing clients in all phases of mass tort, securities litigation, shareholder derivative actions, First Amendment law, copyright, insurance and indemnit...
Senior Associate
Email (310) 712-6169(310) 712-6169
Ken Kronstadt is a senior associate in the firm’s Los Angeles office. Ken is a member of the firm’s insurance recovery group, and represents policyholders in insurance coverage and bad...
Associate
Email (310) 712-6145(310) 712-6145
Andreas Becker is an associate in the firm's Los Angeles office. His practice focuses on several aspects of civil litigation, including complex business litigation, contract disputes, intellec...
Associate
Email (310) 712-6105(310) 712-6105
Sarah Diamond is a trial attorney who focuses her practice on general business litigation, with a particular focus on representing clients in the media and entertainment industry.  Sarah has r...
Associate
Email (310) 712-6187(310) 712-6187
Andrew Dubin represents clients in a variety of complex litigation matters including contract disputes, fraud and unfair trade practices, copyright and trademark infringement claims, business tort...
Associate
Email (202) 342-8415(202) 342-8415
Mindy Pava is an associate in the firm’s Washington D.C. office. Her practice focuses on general litigation, with a particular emphasis on consumer class action defense, commercial litigation...

Publications

01/11/2017 | Articles
Law360
10/03/2016 | Articles
Entertainment and Sports Lawyer

Contact Information

Lee S. Brenner
Practice Chair
(310) 712-6125
lbrenner@kelleydrye.com

Events

Jun
14
2017
Century City, CA | Speaking Engagement
Apr
20
2017
| Speaking Engagement
Apr
14
2017
Berkeley, CA | Speaking Engagement