Entertainment, Media and the Arts

Our attorneys work with producers, distributors, studios, merchandisers, designers, marketers, authors, agents, athletes, musicians, artists, photographers, personalities and other creators to help them protect and promote their efforts. We understand the unique legal challenges they face and provide legal advice tailored to their needs. Additionally, our team stays abreast of changing laws and regulations to provide strategic counsel so that you can remain focused on your craft.

See More

Our team

Calfee’s entertainment lawyers are leaders in their field:  we have been named a 2012 Leading Entertainment Lawyer by Newsweek magazine; we have testified before the Ohio Senate and House committees regarding proposed industry-related legislation; we have chaired the Board of the Greater Cleveland Film Commission; and we often are sought out to give presentations and author articles on entertainment law.  We have backgrounds and experience in intellectual property, information technology, corporate law, debt and equity financing and litigation.  Plus, our clients have the full resources of our 150-plus lawyers whose experience can be brought to the table when needed.

What makes us different

Based in Ohio, Calfee offers sophisticated legal counsel with Midwest sensibility and sensitivity.  Our clients’ success is the highest priority of our firm.  We pride ourselves on being incredibly responsive – both in terms of our communication and your needs.  We offer practical solutions in a straightforward manner.

We know that those who work in the entertainment and sports industries and with multimedia and in the arts face unique legal challenges.

Representative examples of Calfee’s entertainment lawyers’ experience include:

Film & Television

  • Negotiated talent and revenue sharing agreements on behalf of band with television production company
  • Prepared producer’s agreement for film project
  • Negotiated film distribution agreement on behalf of producers
  • Represented CEO in negotiating employment, compensation, stock plan terms with online provider of film, video and music content
  • On behalf of CD and DVD distributor, negotiated agreement with producers of children’s public television series to distribute CDs and DVDs based on program
  • On behalf of documentarian filming in Central America, drafted and negotiated individual releases and permissions to shoot on location
  • On behalf of a multi-national corporation, negotiated talent and endorsement contracts with celebrities in the film industry
  • Testified before Ohio Senate committee in support of state film production tax credit
  • Provided intellectual property and licensing counseling to media companies including cable and production companies

 

Music

  • On behalf of merchandiser, negotiated licenses with rightsholders for Pink Floyd, AC/DC, Bob Marley and Jimi Hendrix
  • Represented a promoter in a multi-million dollar equity offering to fund an annual outdoor multi-day music festival involving over 100 bands.
  • On behalf of a multi-platinum recording artist, negotiated a recording contract with a major music label
  • On behalf of independent CD retailer, prosecuted trademark application and negotiated trademark co-existence agreement with music-related charity
  • Represented major music label in dispute over artwork and negotiation of license
  • On behalf of multi-national corporation, investigated rights to musical compositions and sound recordings and negotiated licenses to same with rightsholder organizations
  • Counseled bands in connection with disputes over band names
  • Counseled insurance policyholders, including concert promoters, on most lines of insurance, including advertising and cyber risk policies
  • On behalf of rights holders, negotiated licensing agreement with music-themed video game maker

Athletics, entertainment, and the arts

  • Represented an athlete in contract negotiations with a professional baseball team
  • Represented developer of MPEG Transmission Technology in dispute over proprietary rights
  • Drafted agreements and website terms of use and prosecuted trademark applications for gaming software company that provides applets for in-game chat, browsing, and game management
  • Represented authors in negotiation of book publishing contracts
  • Represented major health care company in drafting and negotiating endorsement agreement with prominent celebrity
  • Represented photographer in copyright dispute with major retail enterprise
  • Testified before Ohio House of Representatives committee concerning update of telecommunication crimes law to address email and Internet communications
  • Developed and administered dozens of sweepstakes, including a $1 million cash prize sweepstakes for a highly regulated industry
  • Counseled clients regarding ‘notice-and-takedown’ provisions of Digital Millennium Copyright Act
  • Counseled author personality on trademarks and enforcement thereof
  • Enforced licensing agreements of comic strip characters
  • Enforced trademark and licensing agreements of major league baseball team
  • Counseled celebrity chef and restaurateur on contracts, including those with television networks