Akin Gump Adds Four Attorneys to Entertainment Practice in Los Angeles

(Los Angeles, California) -- Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld, L.L.P. announced today that partners P. John Burke and Steve Fayne and associates Marissa J. Román and Carolyn A. Hunt have joined the firm’s Los Angeles office, effective December 6, 1999. The group was formerly with the entertainment law firm of Rosenfeld, Meyer & Susman, and focuses on advising numerous financial institutions around the world with respect to their film and television lending activities. In addition, the group advises studios, producers, distributors, completion guarantors, independent producers, equity investors and others involved in various aspects of the development, financing, production and distribution of film and television product.

The addition of this well-known group of media finance lawyers provides the centerpiece for the firm’s plans to build a global entertainment practice. Akin Gump’s Los Angeles office was opened in August 1997, has grown to more than 50 lawyers and is expanding, particularly in the areas of intellectual property and other entertainment-related legal services. The firm already has a well-established music practice; Channing Johnson and David Braun represent record companies, music executives and recording artists. Howard Fabrick, a well-known entertainment labor relations attorney, also recently joined the firm. James Thoma, who focuses on television and software, joined the firm in September.

R. Bruce McLean, Akin Gump’s chairman, commented, “We are very pleased to announce the addition of John, Steve, Marissa and Carolyn to our Los Angeles office. An institutional entertainment practice is a critical part of the firm’s overall strategic plan for our Los Angeles, New York and London offices. The addition of this group is the result of an extensive search for a group of lawyers highly regarded by banks, studios and others in the entertainment industry. They bring extensive experience in entertainment and media finance and dramatically increase our capabilities to meet the needs of our clients in the next decade in an area that is becoming increasingly important to our clients.”

P. John Burke received his B.A. in 1973 from the University of Southern California, his J.D. in 1976 from the Southwestern University School of Law and his LL.M. in taxation in 1977 from the New York University School of Law. Mr. Burke serves as an officer of the American Film Institute, is a member of the advisory board of the AFI International Film Festival and has served on the board of directors of the Japan America Society. He is a member of the Commercial Law & Bankruptcy, Intellectual Property & Entertainment Law, International Law and Real Property Sections of the Los Angeles County Bar Association and the Entertainment Law and Real Estate Law Sections of the Beverly Hills Bar Associations. He has served as a guest speaker for both organizations.

Steve Fayne received his B.A. in political science from Kent State University in 1967 and his J.D. in 1970 from Columbia Law School, where he was an editor of the Columbia Law Review. He served as chairman of the Entertainment Law Committee of the Beverly Hills Bar Association and as a member of the board of directors of the Los Angeles Copyright Society. He teaches international film financing in the Producer’s Program in UCLA’s Department of Film and Television and has lectured extensively on entertainment-related topics.

Marissa Román received her A.B. in 1990 from Princeton University and her J.D. in 1993 from Stanford Law School. She is a member of the California and District of Columbia Bars and the Los Angeles County and Beverly Hills Bar Associations.

Carolyn Hunt received her B.S. cum laude from San Diego State University in 1989 and her J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center in 1996. She is a member of the California Bar as well as the Los Angeles County and American Bar Associations.

Messrs. Burke and Fayne commented, “We are delighted to be part of Akin Gump’s strategy to build a global entertainment practice. Our clients will benefit greatly from the firm’s vast resources, particularly with the globalization of the entertainment industry with more and more transactions involving co-financings, subsidies, tax incentive arrangements and with the increasing importance of the Internet in the distribution of entertainment content and related opportunities for e-commerce. We have plans to add to our entertainment-related capabilities in Los Angeles, New York and London.”

Founded in 1945, Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld, L.L.P., a leading international law firm, numbers 900 lawyers with offices in Austin, Brussels, Dallas, Houston, London, Los Angeles, Moscow, New York, Philadelphia, Riyadh (affiliate), San Antonio and Washington. The firm has a diversified practice and represents regional, national and international clients in a wide range of areas, including antitrust; banking and financial institutions; bankruptcy, reorganization and creditors’ rights; capital markets; communications; corporate and securities; employee benefits; energy; entertainment; environmental; estate planning and probate; food and drug; government contracts; health; insurance; intellectual property; international; investment management; labor and employment; litigation; mergers and acquisitions; privatization; project finance; public law and policy; real estate and finance; taxation; and technology. For additional information, please visit our Web site at http://www.akingump.com.