UNTOUCHABLE

We are US production counsel for the BBC/Lightbox film, UNTOUCHABLE, about the rise and fall of Harvey Weinstein, premiering at Sundance 2019.

THE EDGE OF DEMOCRACY

We are production counsel to this Oscar short-listed film, which the New York Times has ranked among the top ten films of 2019 in all categories.

THE HATCHET WIELDING HITCHHIKER

We're counsel for this sensational Netflix documentary that has taken the internet by storm.

Fear Thy Neighbor

Production counsel to this Investigation Discovery series about what happens when a homeowner unwittingly takes up residence next to psycho or when evil minds decide to lay down roots right next door.

PLAN B ENTERTAINMENT

Among the counsel for Brad Pitt's production company, acclaimed for SELMA, 12 YEARS A SLAVE, THE BIG SHORT, THE DEPARTED, and other important films.

Fifa Uncovered 2

Dirty Wars

We served as production counsel for this award-winning, widely acclaimed investigative documentary about U.S. covert operations across the globe.

OCTOBER FILMS

We are US and UK counsel to October Films, one of the world's most respected and longest established factual television production companies. They have won over 100 international awards.

ITV

US counsel to the largest and most popular commercial television network in the United Kingdom.

Media Rights Capital

Among counsel to MRC, the industry’s largest independent film, TV and digital studio.

Sins Of Our Mother

BAFTA

Handling contract drafting and negotiations for the British Academy of Film and Television Arts

ORIGIN

As counsel to The Ford Foundation, we handled negotiations and drafting for the funding of this film by Ava DuVernay, which is inspired by the life and work of Pulitzer Prize winner Isabel Wilkerson.

BORAT SUBSEQUENT MOVIEFILM

We are production and claims counsel to Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan

STARZ

Owned by Lionsgate, our client Starz is a leading global media and entertainment distributor/producer, with over 5,000 TV episodes and feature films each year on its several channels.

STUTZ

We're counsel for Jonah Hill's remarkable documentary feature about his therapist and how the therapy transformed him.

Raw TV

US production counsel for Raw TV, a multi-award winning production company with a reputation for gripping narrative, visual innovation and journalistic vigour.

A24

We are honored to be legal and business affairs counsel to A24, winner of dozens of Oscars, and the producers behind EVERYTHING EVERYWHERE ALL AT ONCE, MOONLIGHT, LADY BIRD, THE WHALE, and much more.

NOBODY SPEAK

We have been counsel for producers of this Netflix documentary about the Hulk Hogan vs. Gawker Media case and its outside funding, showing how big money can be used to silence the media.

Sony

Among counsel for Sony Pictures and Sony Pictures Television, producers and/or distributors of some of the most successful motion pictures and programs in the world.

THREE IDENTICAL STRANGERS

We are production counsel to this most successful documentary film since Fahrenheit 9/11.

THE TINDER SWINDLER

We were production counsel for this Netflix true crime series.

Bruno

Production and litigation counsel to Sacha Baron Cohen's award-winning film "Bruno."

Unprecedented

Web of Lies

We are production counsel for this compelling Discovery series that reveals stories of deception and homicide triggered by online interactions.

AMAZON STUDIOS

We are among the litigation defense counsel for Amazon Studios

ENDEMOL SHINE GROUP

We are among the outside counsel for Endemol Shine Group, a global production powerhouse. Endemol Shine has 120 companies across all the world’s major markets.

ALL THREE MEDIA AMERICA

We're among the US and UK counsel for All3Media America, the LA-based, multi studio production hub for one of the world's leading creators of high-quality content.

UNTOUCHABLE: THE INSIDE STORY OF THE HARVEY WEINSTEIN SCANDAL

We are counsel for the Hulu Documentary, UNTOUCHABLE: THE INSIDE STORY OF THE HARVEY WEINSTEIN SCANDAL

CBS CORPORATION

We are among the outside counsel for the CBS television network.

TIGER KING

We are outside counsel for the directors and producers of the most popular documentary series in history.

SHOWTIME NETWORKS, INC.

We are among the outside counsel to Showtime Networks, Inc. At the moment, we are production and claims counsel for their hardhitting, controversial new Sacha Baron Cohen series, WHO IS AMERICA?.

The Ford Foundation

TINA

We're counsel for this definitive HBO biopic of Tina Turner, produced by our Academy Award winning client, Lightbox.

SOPHIE: A MURDER IN WEST CORK

We are counsel for this controversial and compelling Netflix documentary series by our Academy Award winning client, Lightbox.

LAST CHANCE U

We're counsel for this award-winning, very popular Netflix series that goes behind the scenes at the top junior college football programs in the US.

Virunga

We are production counsel for this Oscar-Nominated 2014 documentary about the fight to save Virunga National Park, the last refuge of moutain gorillas.

WHITNEY

We are production counsel for this definitive biopic of Whitney Houston, directed by Oscar-winner Kevin MacDonald and produced by double-Oscar winner Simon Chinn.

JURY DUTY

We're counsel to this insane and hilarious Amazon FreeVee series.

Borat

Production and claims counsel for the multi-Oscar nominated comedy, "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan."

DON'T F**CK WITH CATS -- HUNTING AN INTERNET KILLER

We are counsel to this hit Netflix true crime series that follows internet sleuths who attempted to track down Luka Magnotta after he reportedly shared a graphic video killing cats.

KNOCK DOWN THE HOUSE

We are counsel for KNOCK DOWN THE HOUSE, the acclaimed documentary by Rachel Lears, which was purchased by Netflix at Sundance for a record $10 million.

NATIONAL BIRD

We are honored to be production counsel for this scathing, "bird's eye" documentary, directed by Sonia Kennebeck and exec produced by Wim Wenders and Errol Morris, about the US military drone program.

LISTEN TO ME MARLON

We are production counsel to this 2015 Sundance-selected, 2016 Oscar-Short-Listed, Marlon Brando biopic released by Universal Studios and Showtime.

LEAVING NEVERLAND

We are counsel for this explosive two-part film about Michael Jackson, by Dan Reed for HBO Documentary Films.

SELMA

Honored to be representing the director and producers of this important, Academy-Award-winning film.

THE MOST HATED MAN ON THE INTERNET

We were production counsel for this legally difficult, hugely popular Netflix series by Raw TV.

HBO

Our attorneys have been among the production and claims counsel to Home Box Office, Inc.

KNOCK DOWN THE HOUSE

We are counsel for KNOCK DOWN THE HOUSE, the acclaimed documentary by Rachel Lears, which was purchased by Netflix at Sundance for a record $10 million.

Da Ali G Show

Production and litigation counsel to Sacha Baron Cohen's multiple-Emmy-nominated, path-breaking television series, "Da Ali G Show."

RADICAL MEDIA

We are counsel to film/TV production company Radical Media. With offices in New York, Los Angeles, London, Berlin and Shanghai, Radical is one of the premiere companies in the industry.

BUZZFEED

We are outside counsel to BuzzFeed.

Paramount Pictures

We are among the outside counsel for Paramount Pictures.

100 FOOT WAVE

We're counsel for this HBO Original Series

Channel 4

U.S. counsel to Channel 4, Britain's second largest broadcast network and one of the world's most challenging and creative producers of television programs and films.

CHEER

We are among the production counsel for Season Two of this Triple-Primetime-Emmy-Award-winning series on Netflix.

Trainwreck Woodstock 99

The Imposter

Production counsel for "The Imposter," an astonishingly true story about a French man who fools everyone into believing he is a missing Texas boy, including the boy's family.

LIGHTBOX ENTERTAINMENT

We are US and UK counsel for this LA-and-London based production company founded by multiple Oscar and Emmy Award winning Simon Chinn and Jonathan Chinn, and funded by Channel 4.

TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY FOX

We have been among the outside counsel to Twenty-First Century Fox.

THE BBC

We have been among the outside counsel for the BBC, where SmithDehn's Philip Wheeler was a senior in-house solicitor for 11 years.

FREMANTLE MEDIA

We are among the outside counsel to one of the world's largest and most successful creators, producers and distributors of outstanding entertainment brands.

THE MAURITANIAN

Executive Produced by Russell Smith and Zak Kilberg for our joint venture, Convergent Media. With Jodie Foster, Tahar Rahim, Benedict Cumberbach, and Shailene Woodley.

UNITED SHADES OF AMERICA

We are production counsel for this Primetime Emmy-Award-wining hit CNN series that follows comedian and political provocateur W. Kamau Bell as he explores communities and challenges across America.

NAVALNY

We're handling business affairs and production counsel work on this hard-hitting CNN/HBO documentary by Fishbowl Films.

THE LONGEST WAR

We are counsel to this definitive Showtime Documentary by the creators of HOMELAND and director Greg Barker, which unpacks the human stories and drama behind America's involvement in Afghanistan.

NETFLIX

We are outside counsel for Netflix.

PHILIP GLASS

One of our partners, Russell Smith, has provided legal advice and related services for Philip Glass, the world's most successful living music composer.

PASSION PICTURES

We are US and UK counsel to this multiple Oscar winning film and television company behind Searching for Sugar Man, The Imposter, and Project Nim, to name a few.

Our Great National Parks

We were counsel for Netflix on this documentary series narrated by President Obama and produced by his production company, Higher Ground Productions.

AMERICAN ANIMALS

We were production counsel for this "wildly entertaining" (Variety) scripted feature film that captivated the 2018 Sundance Film Festival.

1971: THE YEAR THAT MUSIC CHANGED EVERYTHING

Honored to be production counsel for this Apple+ series from the Oscar award-winning team who created the acclaimed documentary, AMY

BECKHAM

We are counsel for this four-part documentary series that reached number one on Netflix in the US and the UK.

The Princess

SEARCHING FOR SUGAR MAN

Production counsel for the late Malik Bendjelloul's sensational, Oscar-winning "Searching for Sugar Man," released by Sony Pictures Classics.

WHO IS AMERICA?

We are production and claims counsel for Showtime, Sacha Baron Cohen, and their hardhitting, controversial new series, WHO IS AMERICA?, a reincarnation of DA ALI G SHOW in the Trump era.

FORMULA 1: DRIVE TO SURVIVE

We're counsel for this Netflix documentary series.

MURDER MOUNTAIN

We're counsel for this acclaimed and popular documentary series.

Gold Rush - Raw Television

Production counsel for all nine seasons of Discovery's popular observational documentary television series, "Gold Rush."

THE FINAL YEAR

An insiders' account of President Barack Obama's foreign policy team during their final year, as they set out to define their legacy, promote diplomacy - and react to the rise of Donald Trump.

PARTICIPANT

We are among the outside counsel for Participant, whose projects have won multiple Academy Awards and have been nominated for over 50.

CITIZENFOUR

We're among the counsel for this Oscar-winning (Best Feature Documentary) about Edward Snowden and national security in post 9/11 America.

All That Breathes

THE WARHOL DECISION. NO, THE SKY IS NOT FALLING.

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We've heard from many clients who have read about the Supreme Court's Warhol decision, and who are worried.

You've probably seen some of the scary and misleading clickbait headlines, from not only the media, but even in seemingly hurried statements by some big law firms:

"Andy Warhol Ruling Limits Fair Use for Copyrighted Images, With Far-Reaching Hollywood Implications"

"Supreme Court’s Warhol Decision Transforms Law of Fair Use"

"Supreme Court Rules No Fair Use for Warhol"

"Warhol's 'Prince Series' Is Not Fair Use of Copyright, SCOTUS Holds"

None of those headlines are accurate.

The Warhol decision does not include any ruling on whether Warhol's artwork infringed on the work of the photographer, Goldsmith, whose photo he used as a template to create his new work that re-interpreted the image of the musical artist, Prince, in a new and very different way. To the contrary, the decision explicitly suggests that the Supreme Court might not have had any problem ruling in favor of fair use if the Warhol artwork had been used in a "for-profit" way that did not directly compete with the business of the photographer whose photo Warhol used as a template.

The Warhol decision should have zero impact on any of the television and film projects of any of our over 700 production company and distributor clients whom we have been advising for over two decades.

The Supreme Court expressly states that it is not ruling on whether fair use applied to "the creation, display, or sale of any of [Warhol's] original Prince Series works."

Instead, the decision is narrowly focused on the Andy Warhol Foundation's "use" of a copy of one of Warhol's Prince artworks to obtain a licensing fee from a magazine for a cover story about Prince, in direct competition with the photographer Goldsmith, whose photograph was used for the Warhol work at issue, and who was in the business of licensing the same photograph for magazine cover stories about Prince.

Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan correctly, albeit simplistically, said in her scathing dissent, joined by Chief Justice Roberts, as follows: "Warhol licensed his portrait to a magazine, and Goldsmith sometimes licensed her photos to magazines too. That is the sum and substance of the majority opinion."

Like Justice Kagan and Chief Justice Roberts, we don't agree with the majority decision. We believe that the transformative nature of Warhol's work outweighs any commercial benefit his Foundation derived from licensing his work under any circumstances. But that view of ours is irrelevant here, because (a) none of us are in the majority of the Supreme Court on this issue, and (b) the majority decision does not apply to any of the thousands of "fair uses" on the part of our film and television clients, who never compete commercially with the copyright owners of the clips and stills they use.

Importantly, the Supreme Court in the Warhol decision re-affirmed the balancing test between transformativeness and commerciality set forth in its previous Campbell decision, reminding fair use litigants that "a use’s transformativeness may out-weigh its commercial character." In the Warhol decision, it is crucial that the Court restated that even a commercial use could qualify for fair use where the use "has a purpose and character that is sufficiently distinct from the original."

In the concurring opinion, Justice Gorsuch, joined by Justice Jackson, emphasized that the ruling pertained not to Warhol's artwork itself, but only to the Warhol Foundation's use of the Warhol work in direct competition with the photographer. He openly suggested that had the case been about the Foundation using the Warhol work in a "for-profit book commenting on 20th century art" instead, fair use could apply.

In short, the Warhol decision, given its facts and holding, should have no bearing on the television programs and films of our clients, except positively insofar as the decision reaffirms that fair use can apply where, as in the case of all of the thousands of fair use opinions we have written, the unlicensed use of the original work is not for the same or similar purpose of the original use by the copyright owner. We wish we could say that all distributors will share our view. Sadly, we're already seeing some crackdown against fair use. And undoubtedly there now will be more claims by professional photographers. But we will continue to base our legal opinions on the law, which remains favorable to fair use on the part of our clients.