News

Eleanor M. Lackman Speaks at PLI’s “IP Licensing Issues”

December 3, 2011

On Thursday, January 19, 2012 from 3:30pm to 5pm, Eleanor M. Lackman speaks on the panel “IP Licensing Issues” at the IP Issues in Business Transactions 2012 conference at the Practising Law Institute (PLI). She will address IP strategies and protections necessary to achieve a timeline of goals for transactions involving copyright, trademark and publicity rights. Topics include grant backs, sublicensing rights, first sale issues, enforcement, quality control and more.

Mary E. Rasenberger on the Google Books Settlement

November 19, 2011

On Sunday, November 30, from 11:30am to 12:45pm, CDAS Partner Mary E. Rasenberger will be speaking at the C&T Conference on Copyright & Technology 2011. Her panel “The Google Book Settlement: Good Riddance or Lost Opportunity?will be held at the Manhattan Penthouse. Now that the settlement is dead, what will happen next? What should happen?

Nancy E. Wolff on Art Law Panel at NYCLA

November 12, 2011

On Friday, November 18 (8:45am – 5:30pm) Nancy E. Wolff joins a panel of experts on art law at the NYCLA, 4th Annual Art Litigation and Dispute Resolution Institute. (CLE credit available).

CDAS Congratulate Clients’ Films Opening Today!

Friday, November 11, 2011

CDAS congratulates our clients on their films opening today. Elite Squad: The Enemy Within, Brazil’s highest-grossing domestic film and its Oscar bet for Best Foreign Film, opens today in the U.S.

Also Werner Herzog’s Into the Abyss opens today in limited release. The Rum Diary starring Johnny Depp, which opened in the U.S. a week ago, has its U.K. opening today.

And Immortals opens across the country today including in 3-D.

(For Elite Squad: The Enemy Within, Legal: Susan H. Bodine for director Jose Padilha. — For Into the Abyss, Legal: Marc H. Simon for Creative Differences. — For The Rum Diary, Legal: Marc H. Simon for FilmDistrict. –For Immortals, Legal: Susan H. Bodine for Universal International).

Mary E. Rasenberger at Anti-Piracy Summit

November 11, 2011

Tuesday November 15 from 9:45am to 10:30am, Mary E. Rasenberger will speak on the panel “Around the World: Recap of Recent Legislative Efforts” at The Anti-Piracy and Content Protection Summit in Sentry Center, NYC. (The entire festival runs November 14-16th). Topics include updates on the pending Protect IP Act, new international regulatory proposals, and international ip support.

Mary E. Rasenberger Speaks on Righthaven at IPLJ

November 10, 2011

On Friday November 11, from 9:30am to 3:45pm, CDAS Partner Mary E. Rasenberger will speak at the 2011 IPLJ at a Fordham School of Law conference, IP Bullying or Proactive Enforcement?” about the Righthaven cases.

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Eleanor M. Lackman – The New Frontier: Clouds

November 10, 2011

Eleanor M. Lackman speaks on a panel entitled “The New Frontier: Clouds” as part of the 23rd Annual North American Entertainment, Sports and Intellectual Property Law Conference in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico on November 12. This plenary, the closing panel of the conference, focuses on cloud-based media and how to navigate the web of IP, business and legal concerns in this rapidly evolving frontier.

Jennifer Fox’s My Reincarnation In Theaters

November 10, 2011

The critically-acclaimed documentary My Reincarnation is now in theaters in New York, poised to expand to other markets. Jennifer Fox’s documentary follows Yeshi, the Westernized son of Buddhist master Chogal Namkhai Norbu. Yeshi has been acknowledged since the age of 5 to be the reincarnation of Khyentse, a great Dzogchen Buddhist master himself. Still Yeshi through his teens rebuffs a life expected by others as he remains emotionally estranged from his father. This award-winning film traces Yeshi’s spiritual awakening as he struggles with who he truly is. (Legal: Robert I. Freedman for director/producer Jennifer Fox, and Zohe Films.

Andrea F. Cannistraci at Stock Footage: Creative Uses, Licensing and Fair Use at PIIP

November 10, 2011

Stock Footage: Creative Uses, Licensing and Fair Use“, an educational event co-hosted by the Parsons Institute for Intellectual Property (PIIP) and the Association of Commercial Stock Footage Licensors (ACSIL), was a great success. Panelists, including Andrea F. Cannistraci, spoke November 3 about the use of stock footage to produce content across media, the creative and legal opportunities and limitations inherent in using stock footage and the practical issues of licensing, clearances and the applicability of Fair Use doctrine. ACSIL is a non-profit association dedicated to promoting and advancing the professional interests of the stock footage industry. The Parsons Institute for Intellectual Property at The New School focuses on the intersections between intellectual property, ownership, expression, culture and media in the 21st Century.

Spreecast Launches Today!

November 10, 2011

We congratulate Spreecast — a social video platform that lets people broadcast together — on its launch today. Marc H. Simon was pleased to be one of the inaugural Spreecasts as he was interviewed by Spreecast founder Jeff Fluhr about Unraveled, the 2011 documentary produced and directed by Mr. Simon and co-produced by CDAS client Stick Figure Productions.

Mobcaster Launches Today!

November 10, 2011

Mobcaster, a crowd-funding platform / online television channel launches today. Mobcaster pioneers an innovative way to discover and watch new television shows. This site allows TV creators to pitch their show ideas directly to the audience who then have the chance to choose what gets made. If audience members like the concept, they can pledge directly to the shows they want to see and if there is enough support, the show is produced. Fresh, talented writers and producers now have a platform to build their audience who then return to watch original, independent, audience-supported television programming. (Legal: Andrea F. Cannistraci and Joshua B. Sessler).

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Kenneth N. Swezey @ Storyworld

November 3, 2011

Kenneth N. Swezey spoke on a panel discussing how to structure deals for transmedia properties at Storyworld in San Francisco on November 1st, the conference for multiplatform storytelling that reaches audiences across all platforms, from films, to books, games, social media and much more. The well-received panel “Pitching and Selling Your Idea – Challenges and Parameters” covered a host of challenges encountered in this emerging digital content format from initial pitching and steering your intellectual property from idea to execution, including deal structuring, leveraging new contracts and many strategies to develop your IP in conjunction with publishers, digital media producers, and studios involved in transmedia projects.

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DOC NYC features Unraveled, First Position, Into the Abyss, No Look Pass, On Being There with Richard Leacock, and Project Nim

Updated: 11/411

Unraveled screens at DOC NYC November 5th and 9th. Directed and produced by CDAS Partner Marc H. Simon (After Innocence, Nursery University) and co-produced by Frederick P. Bimbler’s client Stick Figure Productions, Unraveled is an intimate portrait of Marc Dreier, a prominent Manhattan attorney, arrested for orchestrating a massive fraud scheme that netted hundreds of millions of dollars from hedge funds. Interwoven with flashbacks, Unraveled is set in the “purgatory” of house arrest — an upper East Side penthouse — where the Court has ordered Dreier confined until his sentencing day.

First Position also screens November 5th at DOC NYC. Directed and produced by Bess Kargman, this documentary follows six aspiring dancers (ages 9-19) as they prepare for the ballet’s toughest youth competition. The film has enjoyed raves from critics including in Variety.

Werner Herzog’s Into the Abyss will open DOC NYC on November 2nd. Co-produced by CDAS client Creative Differences, this documentary takes us inside a Texas prison to meet inmates convicted of triple homicide. Mr. Simon has handled the legal services and negotiations for the distribution of both films and has also handled the financing and production for First Position. North American distribution rights for Into the Abyss as well as First Position have been picked up by Sundance Selects, a sister company of IFC Films, which enjoyed solid success with Herzog’s Cave of Forgotten Dreams. (Mr. Simon also provided legal counsel for the distribution of Dreams as well).

Opening DOC NYC’s Tribute to Richard Leacock on November 4th is Jane Weiner’s work-in-progress On Being There with Richard Leacock. In this intimate portrait of documentarian Richard Leacock, Director Jane Weiner draws upon footage that she’s shot over 38 years of Leacock’s encounters with other master filmmakers and artists. The film includes footage from his classic films and never-before-seen segments from his personal archives. Ms. Weiner is represented by CDAS’ Robert I. Freedman.

Melissa Johnson’s award-winning documentary, No Look Pass will make its East Coast debut at Doc NYC on November 5th and 7th. The film follows Harvard basketball superstar Emily Tay, who struggles to balance the rigors of playing for a professional basketball team in Germany while trying to maintain a relationship with her conservative Burmese-American immigrant parents, and gains the courage to “come out” in her lesbian relationship with a U.S. servicewoman on the cusp of the demise of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell”. Winner of the Special Programming Award for Freedom at LA’s Outfest, it has been hailed as a “A masterful piece of documentary filmmaking… the most honest show of a lifetime.” CDAS’ Marc H. Simon and Janis C. Nelson represent No Look Pass director/producer Melissa Johnson and production company High Hip Productions.

And Project Nim screens at DOC NYC November 10 at the close of the festival. Following his Oscar-winning Man on Wire, director James Marsh turns to another iconographic story rooted in 1970s New York. Nim Chimpsky was the chimpanzee subject of a Columbia University experiment led by psychologist Herbert Terrace that sought to discover how much chimps and humans could communicate through sign language. On November 18 the film was officially shortlisted for the Oscar. (Legal: Andrea F. Cannistraci for co-producer Maureen Ryan).

CDAS is proud to once again co-sponsor DOC NYC.

Jim Harrison’s The Great Leader on the NY Times’ Bestsellers List

October 20, 2011

Hitting the New York Times Bestsellers List this week, Jim Harrison’s newest novel The Great Leader finds his aging protagonist, Sunderson, hunting a cult leader. Pete Dexter in the New York Times writes, “it carbonates page after page. You might go so far as to compare it to Joe DiMaggio’s 56-page hitting streak.”… “30 odd books down the road and you can still feel the excitement every time he (Harrison) pulls something out of his ear, which pretty much happens on every page he writes.”… “Jim Harrison can break all the rules he wants and come out smelling like a rose.” J. Stephen Sheppard represents Mr. Harrison.

The Brisket Book: A Love Story with Recipes

October 20, 2011

Food writer, cookbook author, and brisket zealot Stephanie Pierson’s The Brisket Book: A Love Story with Recipes is now available in hardcover and e-book. “Some foods will improve your meal, your mood, your day, your buttered noodles. Brisket will improve your life,” Ms. Pierson declares. From Scandinavian Aquavit Brisket, to a Barbecued Brisket Sandwiches with Firecracker Sauce, to a vegetarian Seitan Brisket, there are recipes for every taste and occasion. “Brisket is a cross-cultural wonder,” Ms. Pierson writes, “a Jewish dish cooked in a Dutch oven with a Sicilian sauce served in North Dakota.” J. Stephen Sheppard represents Ms. Pierson.

CDAS Client NDI Gets Its Own Stage

October 16, 2011

For 35 years, CDAS client The National Dance Institute (NDI) has rented and borrowed space as it brought performance and arts education to thousands of New York City public school students, but last Tuesday a ribbon cutting ceremony opened NDI’s new home, in what was formerly P.S. 90 Public School, in Harlem. “I think of the center as a crucible of learning and the arts,” said Mr. d’Amboise, 77, founder of NDI and the subject of “He Makes Me Feel Like Dancin’,” which won the 1983 Oscar for best feature documentary. Mayor Michael Bloomberg and other dignitaries were on hand for the ribbon-cutting. CDAS’ Robert I. Freedman, who represents Mr. D’Amboise and NDI, has been an NDI Board Member for 12 years and was chair of the committee that financed, acquired and built the new facility.

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Eleanor M. Lackman Named to INTA’s Internet Committee

October 5, 2011

Eleanor M. Lackman has been appointed to INTA’s Internet Committee for the 2012-2013 term. The International Trademark Association (INTA) is an organization of several thousands of members from over 190 countries. Its Internet Committee advises INTA on policies and advocacy related to trademarks and the internet including domain name issues and matters involving general online trademark use. “It is an honor to be selected to join leading trademark practitioners from law firms, technology companies and other major corporations from around the world, to discuss and advise on legal and policy issues that will impact trademark owners and online trademark use in particular,” Ms. Lackman reports.

Wishful Drinking’s Chicago Run Opens to Raves

October 5, 2011

Hot off two Emmy nominations for the filmed HBO special of her Broadway one-woman live performance, Wishful Drinking, Carrie Fisher’s Chicago run has opened to raves.

Chris Jones in the Chicago Tribune writes: “It’s a savvy highlight of an extraordinarily well-constructed solo show: as shrewd and arresting and deliciously meta, a celebrity solo confessional as you are ever likely to see…”. And from the Chicago Stage Review: “Her banter with the audience is delightfully funny, confident and as fearless as her personal exposé… She is having a great time at her own expense and she creates a wonderfully intelligent, profoundly personal and extremely entertaining evening in the process.” Frederick P. Bimbler represents Carrie Fisher and the live-stage show.

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Elite Squad: The Enemy Within is Brazil’s Oscar Bet

October 4, 2011

Director José Padilha’s Elite Squad: The Enemy Within (Tropa de Elite 2), Brazil’s submission for the 84th Academy Awards, opens November 11 in the U.S. This gritty crime thriller, (which passed its predecessor Elite Squad as Brazil’s most successful movie of all time), uncovers a far-ranging web of corruption amongst the special military police assigned to clean up the crime-ridden favelas of Rio. Next up, Mr. Padhila helms the re-boot of Robocop. Susan H. Bodine represents Mr. Padilha and provided production and distribution legal services for the film.

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Mary E. Rasenberger (at left) and Eleanor M. Lackman (at right)

CDAS Brings In Two New Partners to Expand Its Copyright, Trademark & Digital Media Practice

Cowan DeBaets Abrahams & Sheppard LLP is expanding its digital media and intellectual property practice with strategic hires of two well-known attorneys in the copyright and trademark fields, Mary E. Rasenberger and Eleanor M. Lackman, who have joined the firm, each as a partner. (PLEASE CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL PRESS RELEASE).

Also, Cowan, DeBaets, Abrahams & Sheppard LLP is pleased to announce:

Relatively Speaking Now in Previews

September 20, 2011

Relatively Speaking, a comedy made up of one-act plays by Ethan Coen, Woody Allen and Elaine May, began previews September 20 and opens October 20 on Broadway. Frequent Coen Brothers collaborator John Turturro directs the cast which includes Julie Kavner. Each of the three one-acts follows a different branch of a single family tree. Timothy J. DeBaets represents Edward Walson, the co-producer of Relatively Speaking. (Mr. Walson is also an independent film producer (City Island) and cable television owner, he and his family own Service Electric Cable TV systems).

Timothy J. DeBaets & Robert I. Freedman: Super Lawyers

September 20, 2011

Timothy J. DeBaets has been named a Super Lawyer, and for the sixth year in a row, Robert I. Freedman has been named a Super Lawyer. Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas; the selection process includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations. Super Lawyers magazine features the list and profiles of selected attorneys and is also published as a special section in leading city and regional magazines.

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Client FilmDistrict’s Drive Owns the Road

September 19, 2011

Just as the race for audiences’ and critics’ summer winner seemed at its end, CDAS client FilmDistrict’s Drive is pulling to the front. Hot off its Cannes’ Best Director honors for Nicholas Winding Refn, Drive wound through last week’s Toronto International Film Festival with a boost of excitement. Since opening across the country last Friday, the film is generating broad critical heat right off the starting line. This high-octane action-drama stars Ryan Gosling as a wheelman who drives movie stunts by day and a getaway car by night. Marc H. Simon, who represents FilmDistrict, congratulates his client as their winning streak continues in “over Drive”.

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Toronto Film Festival: Into the Abyss, First Position, Think of Me & Dark Horse

September 19, 2011

Werner Herzog’s Into the Abyss opened at the Toronto International Film Festival. (The ten-day festival ended this last weekend). The documentary takes us inside a Texas prison to meet inmates convicted of triple homicide. And First Position premiered at Toronto. Directed and produced by Bess Kargman, this documentary follows six aspiring dancers (ages 9-19) as they prepare for the ballet world’s toughest youth competition. The film has enjoyed raves from critics including Variety. Marc H. Simon is handling the legal services and negotiations for the distribution of both films and has also handled the financing and production for First Position.

Variety reports that following the standing ovation for First Position, buyers were “immediately on the phone” and that the film “looks like this year’s Spellbound.”

North American distribution rights for Into the Abyss have already been picked up by Sundance Selects, a sister company of IFC Films, which enjoyed solid success with Herzog’s Cave of Forgotten Dreams.(Mr. Simon also provided legal counsel for the distribution of Dreams as well).

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Congratulations to Our Emmy-Nominated Clients

Frederick P. Bimbler’s client Sofia Vergara was nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actress for a Comedy Series, for her work in Modern Family.

Carrie Fisher’s Wishful Drinking (HBO) was nominated for Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Special (and the show also picked up a nomination for Outstanding Picture Editing for a Special). Mr. Bimbler represents Carrie Fisher and the live-stage show currently on tour in North America.

Stand Up To Cancer was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Non-Fiction Special. Stephen Sheppard, with assistance from Andrea Cannistraci and Robert Epstein, represents Stand Up To Cancer.

Smash His Camera (HBO) directed by Leon Gast was nominated for Outstanding Arts & Culture Programming. Marc H. Simon was production and distribution counsel.

Robert Freedman’s client Jerry Foley was nominated for Outstanding Directing for a Variety, Music or Comedy Series for his work on The Late Show with David Letterman.

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CDAS a Founding Member of Copyright Alliance’s Legal Advisory Board

Washington, August 9, 2011 – The Copyright Alliance announced the establishment of a Legal Advisory Board that includes CDAS as a founding Advisory Board member. Committed to promoting the cultural and economic benefits of copyright, the Copyright Alliance brings together a broad panoply of parties, from artists’ unions to major publishers. Its Legal Advisory Board will work with the Alliance and its membership to advance copyright strategy and develop a variety of projects and programs, including providing assistance to individual artists and creators, hosting educational events and webinars, expanding work with law schools and young lawyers, and contributing writing and research.

Susan H. Bodine & Nancy E. Wolff Named as Among the Top Women Lawyers in the Northeast

We congratulate CDAS Partners Susan H. Bodine and Nancy E. Wolff at both having been named as among the Top Women Lawyers in the Northeast by Martindale-Hubbell. With over one million lawyers in over 160 countries in its database, Martindale-Hubbell tapped its list of Peer Review Ratings to identify women attorneys on the Northeast rated by peers as AV Preeminent — the highest Peer Review Rating available.

Timothy J. DeBaets on Panel Helping Guide the Future of Dance/NYC

Timothy J. DeBaets is part of a panel of experts asked to help determine the future of Dance/NYC. (Mr. DeBaets is the panel’s legal expert). Dance/NYC is a satellite of Dance/USA, the national service organization for professional dance. Dance/NYC’s mission is to sustain and advance the professional dance field in New York City, serving as the voice, guide and infrastructure architect for local dance artists, audiences and managers.

Park Pictures Features Launches with Robot and Frank

Park Pictures, a well-known and respected commercial production company, has launched its feature film division, Park Pictures Features, and their first film, Robot and Frank, starring Susan Sarandon, Frank Langella and Liev Shreiber, has just been announced and is in production. Several other projects will follow including an adaptation of The Ask, Sam Lipsyte’s bestselling novel. Marc H. Simon represents Park Pictures, its producer Galt Niederhoffer and CDAS is providing all legal services on Robot and Frank.

CDAS Sponsors ASPP’s Annual Summer Garden Party

CDAS is proud to sponsor the NY Chapter of the American Society of Picture Professionals’ 2011 Annual Summer Garden Party at Bridgeman Art Library, August 3, 7pm – 10pm. As always the Annual Summer Garden Party is a great chance to meet and network with picture professionals from all sides of the business.

Nancy E. Wolff on Licensing Panel

Nancy E. Wolff will appear on the panel “Five Things You Need To Know About Licensing” at the Practicing Law Institute, July 18th at 3:30pm. The discussion will cover a range of licensing issues in music and sound recordings, software, photography, film, video, internet and media considerations. Tickets are still available.

CDAS Nantucket Film Festival Honors

We congratulate CDAS Partner Marc H. Simon and our client Stick Figure Productions. Their film Unraveled, which Marc directed and produced with Stick Figure as the lead production company, won Best Storytelling in a Documentary Film at the Nantucket Film Festival.

And kudos to firm client Amy Wendel, co-writer and director of All She Can (formerly known as Benavides Born). Amy is the proud recipient of the Adrienne Shelley Excellence in Filmmaking Award at Nantucket. CDAS Partner Andrea Cannistraci represents Amy and the film.

CDAS is also proud to have sponsored the Nantucket Screenwriting Colony.

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Marc H. Simon’s Unraveled Premieres at L.A. Film Festival

We congratulate CDAS Partner Marc H. Simon on the premiere of his newest documentary, Unraveled, Friday June 17th (with screenings June 19th and 20th as well) at the L.A. Film Festival.

Directed and produced by Mr. Simon and co-produced by CDAS client Stick Figure Productions, Unraveled is an intimate portrait of Marc Dreier, a prominent Manhattan attorney, who was arrested for orchestrating a massive fraud scheme that netted hundreds of millions of dollars from hedge funds. Unraveled is set in the “purgatory” of house arrest — an upper East Side penthouse — where the Court has ordered Dreier confined until his sentencing day. The film weaves Dreier’s struggle to prepare for the possibility of life imprisonment with candid interviews and first-person flashbacks which reveal his audacious path of destruction.

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Elite Squad: The Enemy Within, at L.A. Film Festival

Susan H. Bodine is on hand at the L.A. Film Festival as her client, director José Padilha’s Elite Squad: The Enemy Within (Tropa de Elite 2) screens at the festival’s International Competition (June 17th and 21st). This action-packed thriller, Brazil’s most successful movie of all time, uncovers a far-ranging web of corruption amongst the special military police assigned to clean up the crime-ridden favelas of Rio. Next up, Mr. Padhila helms the re-boot of Robocop.

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Nancy E. Wolff a Panelist for New York Women in Film & TV Event

Nancy E. Wolff will be a panelist for New York Women in Film and Television’s “Moviemaking on the Web: Legal and Business Issues for Emerging Platforms”, Thursday, June 9 at 6:30pm. NYWIFT has assembled a panel of experts to help guide creators through the rapidly evolving terrain of emerging digital platforms and the business and legal concerns that often change just as quickly.

They will overview a winning gameplan for low-budget streaming productions, covering union agreement with writers and actors, distribution contracts, co-production agreements, licensing models, chain of title and more. Joining Nancy on the panel will be Steven Beckman (Head of Content Acquisitions at Cinetic / Filmbuff), Julia Ahumada Grub (actor, writer and producer) and Kevin Kearney (Managing Director of All Day Everyday, a leader in multi-platform marketing and entertainment). Registration is free.

CDAS Co-Sponsors 2011 Copyright of the USA Annual Meeting

CDAS is proud to be one of the sponsors of the 2011 annual meeting of the Copyright Society of the USA, which this year will be held June 6-7 at Bolton Landing, New York. Topics will include recent developments in copyright law, mass copyright infringement claims, and the hotly debated URAA.

CDAS is pleased to help support a dialogue on such important intellectual property issues. (Registration is still open).

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Clients’ The Tree of Life wins Cannes’ Palme d’Or

The critically praised film The Tree of Life won the Palme d’Or, Best Picture at the Cannes Film Festival. The award was accepted by producers Bill Pohlad and Sarah Green.

Susan H. Bodine, Frederick P. Bimbler and everyone at CDAS who provided production counsel services for film, and worked so closely with Ms. Green in particular, applaud the film’s producers, crew, cast and of course Terrence Malick. This meditative metaphysical drama starring Brad Pitt and Sean Penn has been more than five years in the making.

Congratulations from all of us.

Clients Drive off with Cannes Honors

CDAS client FilmDistrict continues its winning streak, as its recent acquisition Drive was honored at Cannes. Drive helmer Nicholas Winding Refn won with the festival’s Best Director award. This high-octane action-drama stars Ryan Gosling as a wheelman who drives movie stunts by day and robberies by night. Marc H. Simon, who represents FilmDistrict, congratulates his client on continuing to pick the winners.

Thanks for Making Our 2011 Spring Party a Success!

Thank you all so much for making our 2011 CDAS Spring Party so special!

Nancy Wolff Speaks at CEPIC, Istanbul

Nancy E. Wolff will speak at the 2011 CEPIC Congress in Istanbul on May 20 on solutions for orphan works in the picture industry.

Nancy’s presentation will focus U.S. legislation on orphan works and life after the Google Book Settlement, which she has tracked closely throughout. CDAS knows Nancy and all CEPIC attendees will have an enjoyable and informative dialogue on these important issues.

CDAS On Hand for Client’s Paris Opening

Nancy E. Wolff will be in Paris next week at the Louvre, attending the opening of her client Michal Rovner’s exhibition, “Histories”.

Israeli multimedia artist Michal Rovner’s highly anticipated exhibition, which officially opens May 19, is created in situ, projecting her videos directly onto wall inscriptions, sarcophagi, and other ancient objects. The exhibit spans widely, from the medieval moat, to an esplanade where Rovner presents “Mokom” (Hebrew for “space”) — one ruined and one standing temple built by stonemasons of various faiths and origins with stones from the ruins of houses in Jaffa, Gaza, Jerusalem and Bethlehem. Nancy and all of us congratulate Michal Rovner on this honor.

Raves Pave the Way for Cave’s Opening Today

Werner Herzog’s Cave of Forgotten Dreams, which opens in theaters today, has already drawn well-rounded critical praise. Cave of Forgotten Dreams gives the viewer a detailed look into the Chauvet-Pont-d’Arc cave in southern France, which holds the earliest known visions of mankind. Marc H. Simon negotiated domestic distribution rights and also represents the filmmakers in connection with the exploitation of the picture’s rights internationally.

CDAS Clients’ Work Nominated for Outer Critics Circle Awards

The Outer Critics Circle Nominations are in and Freckleface Strawberry has been nominated for Outstanding New Off-Broadway Musical, (Marc H. Simon, production counsel). Evan Jonigkeit has been nominated for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play for his work in High on Broadway, (Frederick P. Bimbler, production counsel on High). Congratulations to all!

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CDAS Seminar at Brooklyn Law Incubator and Policy Clinic (BLIP) a Great Success!

Josh Sessler’s seminar for the Brooklyn Law Incubator and Policy Clinic (BLIP) on selected legal topics of relevance to technology start-ups, was a great success. Addressing some of the needs of the companies who are “graduating” from the clinic, Josh outlined the current investment landscape (the continued difficulty in raising funds from angel groups and strategies for successful VC and institutional funding) and presented an overview of employee incentive vehicles used to compensate and incentivize early employees, including Stock Options and Restricted Stock, Phantom Stock/Units and Profit Interests.

Also addressed, the importance of confidentiality and protecting trade secrets from inception, including non-disclosure agreements and other safeguards against employee leaks. This was the first seminar targeted to the clinic graduates and we thank Professor Jonathan Askin, David Kwon and everyone at the Brooklyn Law Incubator and Policy Clinic for inviting us to take part in their excellent program.

FilmDistrict “…proved it has the goods…”

The recent Variety article FilmDistrict: Riding a B.O. Wave, describes the success of our client FilmDistrict, which recently has released its first two films, the horror hit Insidious and the popular sports-themed biopic Soul Surfer. Combining both tried and true and non-traditional marketing schemes and leveraging key distribution partnerships, FilmDistrict’s strategy of wide releases to target audiences has helped turn worthy, often modestly-budgeted genre films into box office hits. Marc H. Simon who represents FilmDistrict, and all of us at CDAS congratulate our client and affirm Variety’s view that “FilmDistrict means business.”

High on Kathleen Turner’s Return to Broadway

Kathleen Turner returns to the stage in the much-anticipated High, opening April 19that the Booth Theater on Broadway. Ms. Turner portrays Sister Jamison, a brassy, foul-mouthed, ex-alcoholic nun/addiction counselor, who agrees to sponsor a 19 year-old drug user; a relationship that ultimately tests her faith. (Frederick P. Bimbler, who represents the production as well as the producer Leonard Soloway, joins the rest of CDAS in expressing our excitement and delight as opening night nears).

#zOMG – Carrie Fisher Wins NewNowNext Award!

The gay and lesbian cable network Logo has announced the winners for its 2011 NewNowNext Awards. The prizes were presented in a ceremony held on April 7 at The Avalon in downtown Los Angeles and was broadcast April 11 on Logo. Carrie Fisher’s twitter feed (@CarrieFFisher) tied in the #zOMG Internet Award category. Congratulations from Frederick P. Bimbler and all of us.

Insidious Scares Up Major Box Office Earnings

The independent horror film Insidious enjoyed a strong opening weekend, posting nearly $13.5 million across 2408 theatres. Directed by James Wan and written by Leigh Whannell, the duo behind the record-breaking Saw franchise, Insidious was distributed by CDAS client Film District, represented by Marc H. Simon.

Spotlight Shines On Legendary Producer Jerry Weintraub

The documentary His Way premiered this week on HBO. His Way shines the spotlight on Jerry Weintraub, the legendary film producer and personal manager. Spanning the five-decade career of this self-made Brooklyn impresario, His Way features rare personal video and one-on-one interviews with Weintraub, his family and friends, including many luminaries from political circles and Hollywood. Susan H. Bodine and Marc H. Simon served as production counsel on the film.

Kenneth N. Swezey Speaks at 26th Annual Intellectual Property Law Conference

Kenneth N. Swezey will be speaking at the 26th Annual Intellectual Property Law Conference’s program “Termination Rights – Coming Soon to a Theatre Near You” on April 8th. (Registration for this event is still open to ABA members). In 2013, major changes involving termination rights in intellectual property law take effect and many expect a surge of copyright / trademark litigation in the courts. Mr. Swezey prepares us for what lies ahead.

CDAS Client Broadcastr Launches!

Susan H. Bodine, Joshua B. Sessler, and all of us congratulate CDAS client Broadcastr on its web launch and exciting mobile app (now available on their site and soon on iTunes and through the Android market). Broadcastr is a social media platform for location-based stories. It enables the recording, indexing (create playlists) and sharing (follow friends, share on Facebook) of short pieces of audio content — like mini-podcasts — which get pinned to a Google map based on location. Users can then take a GPS-enabled walk as stories about their surroundings stream into their headphones, “like a museum tour of the entire world”. (– Co-founders Andy Hunter and Scott Lindenbaum).

CDAS Client Tweak.com Launches!

Nancy E. Wolff and all of us applaud client Jerry Kenneally (Ernst & Young’s Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year) on the launch ofTweak.com, which was featured recently on Fox Business. Tweak.comempowers business owners to create their own marketing/promotional products, providing “a complete design solution in a web browser”. Nancy worked with Tweak from inception on all legal issues, including licensing digital assets, trademark and domain name work, site terms/conditions, vendor contracts, etc).

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CDAS Clients Win at Independent Spirit Awards

Marc H. Simon and all of us at CDAS congratulate our clients on their films’ wins at the Independent Spirit Awards. Winter’s Bone won Spirit Awards for both Best Supporting Actress, Dale Dickey, as well as for Best Supporting Actor, John Hawkes. The Kids Are All Right won the Spirit Award for Best Screenplay, written by director/co-writer Lisa Cholodenko and co-writer Stuart Blumberg.

CDAS Hosts NY as Part of Worldwide Social Media Week

As part of the global Social Media Week events from Paris to Hong Kong to Istanbul, CDAS’ New York event last night was a great success. The Social Network Startup: Navigating the Web of Legal Issues presented by Kenneth N. Swezey outlined a variety of legal issues surrounding social media startups, including corporate formation options, angel investments, designated agents, insurance, file sharing issues in “open web”, and the impact of key statutes such as the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and Communications Decency Act. Nancy E. Wolff was also on hand and shared valuable insights.

Our special thanks to all those who attended and helped make this lively, informative evening so special. (Don’t forget to follow us and link in through social media and to sign-up for our newsletters!)

Multiple Oscar Nominations for CDAS Clients’ Films

Susan H. Bodine and everyone at CDAS congratulate the film Biutiful, and Marc H. Simon and everyone here congratulates The Kids Are All Right and Winter’s Bone. These clients’ films have each been nominated for multiple Academy Awards.

Biutiful has been nominated for Best Foreign Language Film, and its lead Javier Bardem has been nominated for Best Actor.

The Kids Are All Right has been nominated for Best Picture (Celine Rattray, Producer), Best Actress for Annette Bening, Best Supporting Actor for Mark Ruffalo, and Best Screenplay written by director/co-writer Lisa Cholodenko and co-writer Stuart Blumberg. Congratulations on winning the Independent Spirit Award for Best Screenplay.

Winter’s Bone has been nominated for Best Picture, Best Actress for Jennifer Lawrence, Best Supporting Actor for John Hawkes, and Best Adapted Screenplay by director/co-writer Debra Ganik and co-writer Anne Rosellini. Congratulations on winning the Independent Spirit Award for both Best Supporting Actress, Dale Dickey, as well as for Best Supporting Actor, John Hawkes.

CDAS Clients’ Silent House Acquired at Sundance

Susan H. Bodine and all of us congratulate our clients’ Sundance horror hit Silent House on its acquisition by Liddell Entertainment for domestic and worldwide rights.

Last year, Liddell backed the acquisition of another CDAS client film,Biutiful, which today received Oscar nominations for Best Foreign Language Film and Best Actor for its lead Javier Bardem. CDAS was production counsel on and represent the filmmakers of Silent HouseChris Kentis and Laura Lau who previously thrilled us with Open Water.

CDAS Represents Films in Abundance at 2011 Sundance Film Festival

Following 2010’s highly successful campaign at Sundance, CDAS and its clients are out in numbers for the 2011 Sundance Film Festival which kicks-off January 20. Last year, CDAS-represented films includedWinter’s Bone (Sundance Grand Jury Award, and which was nominated for multiple Oscars), Smash His Camera (which won Best Director at Sundance), and multiple Oscar and BAFTA nominated / multiple Golden Globe winner The Kids Are All Right, as well as José Padilha’s widely-heralded Secret of the Tribes.

This year at Sundance, CDAS is involved with eight films with great expectations for the festival. We were production counsel on and represent the filmmakers Chris Kentis and Laura Lau (Open Water) on their film Silent House. Our client José Padilha returns with the sequel to his Brazilian box office hit Elite Squad, for which CDAS is handling sales and distribution. José also serves as a juror on the World Cinema Documentary Competition Panel. Our attorneys provided production legal and continue to provide legal services for the U.S. Dramatic Competition selection Benavides Born directed by Amy Wendel.

CDAS teams with UTA and Submarine Entertainment to respectively represent the sale of Josh Leonard’s The Lie, produced by Das Films, and U.S. Documentary Competition Selection Resurrect Dead. CDAS client Maureen Ryan (Man on Wire) returns to the Festival with director James Marsh’s highly anticipated documentary Project Nim. Iconic and long-time CDAS client Harry Belafonte is the subject of a beautifully intimate portrayal in Sing Your Song, a selection in the U.S. Documentary Competition. And client Double Wide Media produced the Isabella Rossellini short Animal Distract Me.

CDAS attorneys Sue Bodine, Marc Simon, and Andrea Cannistraci will be present during the Festival. Fellow CDAS film lawyers Steve Sheppard, and Fred Bimbler will not be in Park City but join their colleagues in wishing these worthy films the best of luck.

CDAS Clients’ Hit Tops Golden Globes

Marc H. Simon and everyone at CDAS congratulate their clients ‘ smash indie hit The Kids Are All Right which topped the Golden Globes, with two wins, Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, as well as Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy for Annette Bening. Ms. Bening also picked up a BAFTA nomination for Leading Actress as did her co-star Julianne Moore. Congratulations to our client, director/co-writer Lisa Cholodenko (also BAFTA-nominated for Best Original Screenplay along with co-writer Stuart Blumberg) and everyone involved with the film.

Cowan, DeBaets, Abrahams & Sheppard is Proud to Support the Work of Our Client, Stand Up to Cancer

This holiday season in particular, CDAS is proud to support the work of our client Stand Up to Cancer. Stand Up To Cancer is a new initiative created to accelerate groundbreaking cancer research that will get new therapies to patients quickly and save lives. SU2C‘s goal is to bring together the best and the brightest in the cancer community, encouraging collaboration instead of competition. By galvanizing the entertainment industry, SU2C creates awareness and builds broad public support for this effort.

iD RELEASE Made Available Free On iPhone

As the free version of the iPhone app iD RELEASE launches on iTunes, our own Nancy E. Wolff and Andrea F. Cannistraci helped ensure and protect the intellectual property rights of its creator, CDAS client Hans Nelman, as his exciting app grows in popularity.

iD RELEASE lets photographers and filmmakers capture digital signatures for actors, models, extras and for property releases. The app is easy-to-use and can be navigated by any level photographer or filmmaker to obtain digital signatures, take the photo of the model, actor, location etc. for reference, and to email the completed form as a secure PDF to both signer and user. iD RELEASE‘s standard Getty Images release-forms can be customized by developers we work with to include any other’s releases. All releases run in English or Spanish and can be organized by name, location and shoot. A security log-in feature ensures all collected information remains private.

Cowan, DeBaets, Abrahams & Sheppard is Proud to Announce the Launch of Our New Website

CDAS is proud to announce the launch of our new re-designed and optimized website. Entering 2011, we wanted a site to keep pace with our clients – leading media creators and innovators, including individuals, corporations, associations and non-profits in Entertainment, Publishing, Digital Media and Digital Arts where rapid change in technology and e-business presents new legal challenges and opportunities every day. Please check back regularly to keep on top of our latest news, events, legal alerts and continued site enhancements. If you have any trouble, or need any assistance, or would just like to let us know what you think of our website, we always welcome your feedback.

CDAS Clients Top The Independent Spirit Award Nominations

Marc H. Simon and everyone at CDAS congratulate our clients Debra Granik, Anne Rosellini and Alix Madigan — Their film Winter’s Bonewon Best Feature Film at the Gotham Awards. Winter’s Bone also topped the Spirit Awards with 7 nominations, followed by another Marc Simon and CDAS client project, The Kids Are All Right, which picked up five nominations. Winter’s Bone was also named #1 on New York Magazine’s Best Films of 2010. Congratulations to both!

CDAS Congratulates Fair Game

CDAS congratulates our clients River Road Entertainment producers of Fair Game. The Naomi Watts / Sean Penn thriller shared the National Board of Review’s Freedom of Expression Award.

Fox Searchlight’s Campaign for The Tree of Life Launches Over Weekend

Our own Susan H. Bodine, Frederick P. Bimbler and everyone at CDAS who provided production counsel services for Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life, congratulate the film’s producers on the launch of the teaser campaign this weekend. The Tree of Life, which will be released during 2011, stars Brad Pitt and Sean Penn and tells Malick’s semi-autobiographical story of growing up in the Midwest. Distributor Fox Searchlight unveiled trailers and other transmedia teasers over the weekend to set an “event feel” for the film which has been five years in the making.

CDAS Proudly Sponsors Latin American Conference on U.S. Film/TV Market

We welcome home and congratulate Susan H. Bodine as she returns from having led the successful, intensive-training LATC conference in Buenos Aires. The conference prepared entertainment producers across Latin America to better navigate the challenges of Hollywood and the independent U.S. Film and TV markets. CDAS is proud to have co-sponsored this important summit.

HBO Premieres Wishful Drinking

Frederick P. Bimbler and everyone at CDAS congratulate our client Carrie Fisher on the premiere of her HBO special Wishful Drinking, the filmed version of her Broadway and international hit.

Marc Simon: Dreams Attorney

Marc H. Simon negotiated the domestic distribution rights for Werner Herzog’s 3-D documentary, Cave of Forgotten Dreams which has been picked up by IFC Films at the Toronto Film Festival. Cave of Forgotten Dreams gives the viewer a detailed look into the Chauvet-Pont-d’Arc cave in southern France, which holds the earliest known visions of mankind. Marc is also representing the filmmakers in connection with the exploitation of the picture’s rights internationally.