Marissa Román Griffith focuses her practice on media finance and entertainment transactional matters. She represents domestic and international financial institutions, hedge funds, equity investors and high-net-worth individuals with respect to their film and television financing transactions.
Practice & Background
Ms. Griffith advises borrowers, distributors, studios and others involved in various aspects of the production, financing and distribution of film and television projects. She counsels clients with respect to numerous types of transactions, including negative pick-ups, lines of credit, slate facilities, distribution agreements, domestic and foreign tax incentives and co-financing arrangements in various countries throughout the world.
Ms. Griffith co-chaired the Entertainment Law Section of the Beverly Hills Bar Association from 2004 to 2006, served as secretary of that organization from 2003 to 2004 and was a member of its executive committee from 2002 through 2008. She is also a trustee of the Mexican American Bar Foundation, and member of the board of directors of the Mar Vista Farmers Market Association and of Outfest. Ms. Griffith is the leader of the Los Angeles office diversity committee, and she also sits on the firmwide diversity committee.
Ms. Griffith’s recent engagements include:
- leading the team in connection with the SunTrust Bank-led senior secured revolving credit and term loan facility for Revolution Studios. The SunTrust facility was utilized to purchase Revolution Studios, and continues to be utilized by Revolution Studios to acquire additional titles such as Black Swan, Morgan Creek International’s film library, the Cold Spring Pictures film library, and a five-picture acquisition of films produced by GK Films
- managing Media Rights Capital’s JPMorgan credit facility (including leading the most recent refinancing of such facility), and leading the team representing MRC in connection with the financing of its film and television projects (including the films A Million Ways to Die in the West, Baby Driver, Chappie, The Dark Tower and Ted 2 and the episodic series Blunt Talk, Counterpart, House of Cards and Ozark) and MRC’s co-financing of multiple Sony titles (including 22 Jump Street, Think Like a Man Too, and Sex Tape)
- leading the team representing MUFG Union Bank in connection with the Union-led €100 million senior secured revolving credit facility for a European-based borrower, the proceeds of which are used to invest in film and TV projects that are subject to co-financing agreements with international distribution partners
- leading the team representing Bank of America, N.A. as agent and lender on a credit facility providing up to $150 million of financing for various television series airing on a new cable television network
- leading the team representing Ratpac-Dune Entertainment on its secured revolving credit facility, which provides financing for as many as 75 titles in connection with its multiyear co-financing agreement with Warner Bros. Pictures
- co-leading the team representing RatPac Film Fund LLC on its $150 million Bank of America credit facility, which is used to finance its motion pictures (including films co-financed with Warner Bros’ and other partners) such as Birdman, Black Mass, The Revenant, Pan and Truth
- leading the team representing Comerica Bank as agent and lender on a secured revolving credit facility providing up to $150 million of borrowing base financing to a U.S. studio
- leading the team representing Bank of America and JPMorgan on a credit facility that financed Content Partners’ acquisition of 50% of the CSI television franchise from Goldman Sachs
- representing Trinity Opportunities Limited (Trinity) and Shikumen Capital Management (HK) Limited (SCM) on a mezzanine debt facility for Village Roadshow Entertainment Group that was led by Trinity and co-arranged by SCM, in conjunction with a simultaneous equity investment in VREG by the mezzanine lenders, which collectively provided over $275 million in new funding to VREG—a transaction that won the “Private Equity Deal of the Year” award at the 2013 International Financial Law Review (IFLR) Asia Awards
- representing Hemisphere-Culver Picture Partners in connection with its JPMorgan credit facility, which provides co-financing for U.S. studio films
- representing Comerica Bank on a four-year senior secured revolving credit facility providing up to $100 million of borrowing base financing to a U.S. producer
- representing Union Bank on a four-year senior secured revolving credit facility providing up to €45 million of ultimates-based co-financing for a major European distributor’s films
- representing Union Bank on a three-year senior secured revolving credit and term loan facility providing up to $15 million of borrowing base and library valuation-based financing for a U.S. producer
- managing the administration of a major independent distributor’s film library (consisting of 191 titles) acquired by Goldman Sachs in connection with the restructuring of the former TWC/Goldman Sachs credit facility
- representing Bank of America, Comerica Bank, JPMorgan, Union Bank, Endgame Entertainment, OneWest Bank and other financiers on multiple, single project loans providing financing in excess of $500 million, including for the films A Haunting in Georgia, Enders Game, Evil Dead, Looper, Out of the Furnace, Pitch Perfect and Safe Haven and the television series CSI: Cyber, From Dusk Till Dawn and Hemlock Grove.
Awards & Accolades
- The Hollywood Reporter’s 2017 list of “Top 100 Power Lawyers”
- The Hollywood Reporter’s list of “Hollywood’s Top 20 Dealmakers of 2016”
- Daily Journal’s 2014 list of “Top 100 Women Lawyers,” which recognizes the achievements of women leading the legal community in California
- Variety magazine’s 2017, 2016, 2015, 2013 and 2012 “Dealmakers Impact Report,” recognizing attorneys who played a role in significant showbiz deals of the past year
- Variety’s 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013 "Legal Impact Report", recognizing attorneys who represent “the hottest names, the biggest properties, the funniest web series, and the most popular video games, and probably the next big thing”
- shortlisted in the “Media & Entertainment” category for the 2013 Euromoney Legal Media Group Americas Women in Business Law Awards
- named Best Lawyer in the “Media and Entertainment” category at the 2012 Euromoney Legal Media Group Americas Women in Business Law Awards
- 2009 “Media, Entertainment or Telecom Deal of the Year,” M&A Advisor Middle-Market Financing Award - the firm was recognized for its advisory role on Media Rights Capital’s initial $350 million credit facility
- named a Southern California “Super Lawyer” in Entertainment & Sports in 2004, 2006, 2012 through 2017
- Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business (2005 through 2017 editions) – listed as a leading California transactional attorney practicing in media and entertainment
- The Legal 500 US (2017) listed as a leading attorney in media and entertainment
- recognized by Best Lawyers in America for Entertainment Law – Motion Pictures and Television in 2007 through 2018
- Expert Guides—Guide to the World’s Leading Women in Business Law (2010 through 2017 editions) – listed as a leading U.S. attorney practicing in both media and technology, media & telecommunications
- Expert Guides—Guide to the World’s Leading Media Lawyers (2010 and 2011 editions) – listed as a leading U.S. attorney practicing in media
- Expert Guides—Guide to the World’s Leading Technology, Media & Telecommunications Lawyers (2005, 2008, 2015 and 2016 editions) – listed as a leading U.S. attorney practicing in media
- Expert Guides—The Best of the Best USA (2006, 2008, 2015 and 2016 editions) – listed as a leading practitioner in technology, media & telecommunications.