Media & Entertainment Transactions

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Irell & Manella's LLP's media and entertainment transactions group is a recognized leader in the field, with more than 70 years of experience representing leading global entertainment and new media companies in a wide range of transactions including:

  • private and public debt and equity financings
  • acquiring or selling film or television libraries
  • mergers and acquisitions
  • copyright administration
  • motion picture and television financings
  • format rights
  • multi-platform deals
  • corporate reorganizations and workouts
  • slate deals

In connection with such transactions, the group represents a diverse range of clients, including public and private companies, media conglomerates, movie studios, television networks, production companies, video game developers, financiers, financial institutions, private equity funds, venture capital firms, distributors, producers and executives. 

Our long-standing and unmatched expertise in media and entertainment and intellectual property and technology transactions makes us uniquely suited to assist our clients with their business strategies and to guide them in complex issues that will arise as technology, communications, media and related industries converge. This, coupled with our deep bench of unparalleled talent and resources takes us beyond the margins of a traditional media and entertainment practice, and distinguishes both our practice and Irell & Manella from other firms to provide our client the utmost value and representation.

Recent representative media & entertainment transactions include:

  • Representation of Miramax in its acquisition by media and entertainment company beIN Media Group. Selling shareholders included Qatar Investment Authority and Colony Capital. 
  • Representation of Dalian Wanda Group Co., Ltd., China's largest commercial property company and the world's largest cinema chain operator, in its acquisition of leading production company Legendary Entertainment for $3.5 billion. The transaction is China's largest cross-border cultural acquisition to date.
  • Representation of film studio A24 in the increase of its corporate credit facility to $125 million. Comerica Bank structured and arranged the transaction, and Union Bank acted as the syndication agent. Bank of America, J.P. Morgan and SunTrust joined Comerica Bank and Union Bank in the Comerica-led financing. 
  • Representation of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and related Academy foundation in connection with the issuance of $341 million aggregate principal amount of tax-exempt, fixed and floating rate "Oscar Bonds" to finance the construction and development of the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. 
  • Representation of Guggenheim Securities LLC, as initial purchaser, in connection with a $340 million whole business securitization transaction involving Dick Clark Productions, Inc., the producer of such live television programming as The Golden Globe Awards, The American Music Awards and The Academy of Country Music Awards.
  • Representation of Bank of America and MUFG Union Bank in connection with a $500-million revolving credit facility for production company Studio 8.
  • Representation of indie distributor A24 in securing a $50-million line of credit from Comerica and Union Bank of California. 
  • Representation of AwesomenessTV in its acquisition by DreamWorks Animation for approximately $33 million in cash.
  • Representation of Kin Community, a digital media company and multi-channel network operator specializing in lifestyle and female-focused digital content, in connection with a preferred stock financing led by Canadian broadcaster Corus Entertainment. 
  • Representation of Network Communications, Inc. (NCI), a local media company, in connection with the sale of the company to CoStar Group. The sale included NCI’s flagship business assets associated with Apartment Finder, FinderSocial and FinderSites.
  • Representation of Network Communications, Inc. in connection with the divestiture of its magazine division, which included Unique Homes, ByDesign Publishing, and its home design and home improvement titles such as Atlanta Home & Lifestyles, New England Home, Mountain Living, among others.
  • Representation of RealD, a global licensor of 3D technologies to movie theaters and consumer electronics manufacturers, in connection with the purchase of certain intellectual property assets from the Chapter 11 case of Digital Domain Media Group Inc. and its affiliated debtors. 
  • Representation of Summit Entertainment in its formation, capital raising and ultimate sale to Lionsgate.*
  • Representation of Colony Capital in its acquisition of Miramax Films from Disney and its subsequent financings.*

Irell's media and entertainment transactional lawyers build on the firm's history of handling innovative and complex debt, asset acquisition, or merger transactions related to film companies (including DreamWorks and Miramax), television networks (including A&E Television and Lifetime Entertainment), record labels (including Motown and Polygram), and talent agencies.

*work completed by current firm members while at a prior firm