Media and Entertainment INDUSTRIES
Representing radio and television broadcasters, newspaper publishers, cable programmers, Internet service providers, journalists, entertainment personalities, and others, WilmerHale has developed significant experience in handling the complex challenges faced by those in the media and entertainment industry. The firm’s experience covers a broad range of media and entertainment matters, involving FCC regulation, antitrust and competition issues, copyright levies and infringement, digital broadcast standards, First Amendment and other constitutional issues, the Freedom of Information Act and public right of access, libel, ownership disputes, breach of contract, fraud, and class action litigation.

Experience

  • In Berlyn v. The Washington Post, we secured summary judgment and affirmance on appeal in a section 1 restraint of trade and section 2 monopolization suit accusing The Washington Post of attempting to monopolize the community newspaper market in the Maryland suburbs of Washington, DC.
  • We were the primary antitrust counsel for the combination of Regal Cinemas, United Artists and Edwards movie theatre chains, which together form the nation’s largest theatre chain. We secured clearance from the US Antitrust Division with no divestitures, despite the Division having in the past challenged smaller acquisitions in the same industry.
  • We represent a major entertainment company in five consolidated putative class actions in which plaintiffs alleged that denying admission to violent gang members at the client’s California facility constituted unlawful "racial profiling.” After more than a year and a half of intensive motions practice, discovery and mediated negotiations, the firm has achieved a favorable settlement for its client (subject to court approval).
  • We represented Daniel Snyder, owner of the Washington Redskins, in defeating a challenge brought by an unsuccessful bidder contesting his failed attempt to buy the team from the estate of Jack Kent Cooke.
  • We successfully represented major television networks and the network affiliate associations in a ten-day trial, in which the court ordered EchoStar, the country’s second largest satellite company, to halt its illegal service to over 500,000 subscribers. This victory is the latest in our string of victories for free over-the-air television broadcasters in their long-running battle to stop copyright infringement by satellite providers that misappropriate broadcast signals.

Publications & News

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December 6, 2017

WilmerHale Represents Regal Entertainment Group in Signing of Definitive Agreement to Be Acquired by Cineworld Group PLC

Regal Entertainment Group announced that it has entered into a definitive merger agreement with Cineworld Group PLC for Cineworld, the UK's largest cinema operator.

July 24, 2017

German Government Amends German Foreign Trade and Payments Ordinance to Widen Control of Foreign Takeovers of Critical German Companies

On July 12 the German federal government adopted important amendments to the German Foreign Trade and Payments Ordinance.

July 10, 2017

The European Commission's E-Commerce Report: Practical Lessons

For the last two years, the European Commission (“EC”) has been carrying out a Sector Inquiry into e-commerce of consumer goods and digital content in the EU. As part of this, the EC has sent companies many questionnaires and, in response, received some 9,000 sales, distribution and licensing agreements.

May 26, 2017

WilmerHale Lawyers and Practices Recognized in 2017 Edition of Chambers USA

Chambers and Partners announced its rankings for the 2017 edition of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, with WilmerHale listed among the nation's best in 50 practice area categories. Chambers also ranked 86 WilmerHale lawyers as leaders in their respective fields.

January 12, 2017

SyncOnSet Technologies Secures $1.5M Series A Financing

SyncOnSet was born out of a simple idea: replace the three-ring production binder with professional software designed for how production teams work.

September 29, 2016

Brexit and Data Protection: The Impact on GDPR Compliance

As we wait for the UK to decide what arrangement it will seek with the European Union when it leaves, it may be useful to focus on what Brexit may mean for data protection. This WilmerHale Client Alert was republished in the Journal of the Japanese Institute of International Business Law (Vol. 44, No. 10).

July 13, 2016

Civil Fines Jump Across Agencies Under Inflation Adjustment Act

Civil fines across federal agencies have recently been increased dramatically under the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 (2015 Act) (Sec. 701 of Public Law 114-74), with some more than doubling. Companies violating the Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) Improvements Act, the Securities and Exchange Act, or the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), among others, could soon face civil monetary penalties that are up to 150% higher than the existing levels. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the 2015 Act would increase the federal government's revenue by $1.3 billion over the next ten years.

May 27, 2016

WilmerHale Lawyers and Practices Recognized in 2016 Edition of Chambers USA

Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business announced its final rankings for the 2016 edition, with WilmerHale ranking among the nation's best in 47 practice area categories. Chambers also ranked 82 WilmerHale lawyers as leaders in their respective fields.

March 25, 2016

Innovation and Censorship of Television in China

China has embarked on a difficult transition from high growth fueled by reliance on investment and manufacturing to growth based on consumption and the service sector. For this new economic model, the key to sustaining growth is innovation.

January 19, 2016

Iran Nuclear Sanctions Relief Implemented: New Opportunities Await Non-US Companies, but Comprehensive US Transaction and Export Restrictions Remain in Effect

On January 16, 2016, the United States, its negotiating partners and Iran announced the arrival of Implementation Day for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, to which the parties agreed on July 14, 2015 with respect to the Iranian nuclear program.