Paul D. Swanson is a transactional attorney in the Los Angeles office of Irell & Manella LLP. Mr. Swanson counsels clients with respect to corporate, intellectual property and entertainment-related transactions and issues. He has represented leading investment banks, producers and entertainment lenders in arranging and administering numerous multi-tranche debt and equity motion picture credit facilities. Mr. Swanson has participated in media-related merger and acquisition and securitization transactions, with a specific focus on identifying and resolving intellectual property-related issues.

Mr. Swanson has counseled distributors, production companies and financiers in connection with a wide-range of issues related to the acquisition, financing, development, production and distribution of intellectual properties and entertainment content, including television programs, video games and motion pictures. He has negotiated the title sponsorship, network and cable broadcast and trademark license agreements for a client's sponsorship of a nationally televised PGA Tour golf tournament. Mr. Swanson has also negotiated agreements for the development, hosting and co-branding of websites and advised clients in connection with video game, visual effects, motion capture, digital media, software and technology licensing transactions, OEM agreements, strategic alliances and joint ventures, and marketing and merchandising agreements. He also advises clients in connection with the drafting of contest and sweepstakes rules, privacy policies and terms of use. 

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Representative Matters

Notable media finance and corporate transactions include representing:

  • MUFG Union Bank in a $200 million film production financing transaction for a well known motion picture and television producer and distributor
  • Comerica Bank and MUFG Union Bank, as co-lead arrangers and lenders, in a $150+ million film ultimates financing transaction for Relativity Media, LLC’s subsidiary Beverly Blvd 2 LLC
  • Colony Capital, in the acquisition of the Miramax film library from Disney, and subsequent debt and securitization transactions
  • Summit Entertainment, in a multi-tranche debt and equity financing transaction and related acquisition of Summit Entertainment’s operations, and in numerous motion picture financings, including for the “Twilight Saga” motion pictures
  • Hedge fund, in a $35-million P&A costs term loan
  • Lions Gate Entertainment, in a UK tax benefit transaction
  • Comerica Bank, in a $32-million financing transaction for 60 episodes of a popular television series
  • Goldman Sachs, as arranger, in a $200-million film production financing transaction

Notable intellectual property transactions include representing:

  • DIRECTV, in connection with its acquisition of rights to broadcast television content from major studios and numerous other development, license and technology deals
  • Merrill Lynch & Co, as arranger and lender, in connection with a worldwide diligence process for 400-plus trademarks to be pledged as collateral
  • Upper Deck, in its acquisition of a sports memorabilia and trading card company
  • Summit Entertainment, in devising and implementing international film rights licensing chains in order to minimize tax liability
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Honors & Awards

  • "Up Next," Variety Magazine recognizes the best and brightest up-and-coming entertainment attorneys (2011)
  • Super Lawyers "Rising Star" (2006-2007; 2009-2014)
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Community Involvement

  • Member of the Board of Trustees of Neighborhood Youth Association, a charitable organization which provides at-risk youth, ages 6 – 18, with comprehensive after-school programs to help them reach their full potential
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Bar Admissions

  • California
  • New York
  • Minnesota