Reflecting the diversity of the practice area, the Entertainment & Media Law Concentration is divided into two tracks:
- Entertainment & Media Law Transactional
- Entertainment & Media Law Advocacy
The following describes the requirements for the Transactional and Advocacy tracks, for which Prof. Julie Shapiro is the director.
Practice in the entertainment/media law fields may be either primarily transactional or primarily advocacy/dispute-resolution focused. Further complicating this is the fact that many, but not all, transactional law employers value, or even prefer, their junior attorneys to have litigation experience. Hence, unlike our other Concentrations, the Entertainment & Media Law Concentration offers the above-referenced two focuses or tracks. For general legal practice training (as either a transactional/business lawyer or an advocate), the Entertainment & Media Law Concentration draws on components of the Civil Litigation Concentration and the Corporate Concentration as to advocacy and transactional course work, respectively.
Also, we recommend that students electing one of the tracks also consider taking one or more classes relating to the other. These tracks are slightly different from the other Concentrations approved by the faculty, in several respects. First, most "entertainment/media law" employers do not hire directly out of law school, but rather expect their junior attorneys to have had at least one to three years of practice experience, generally at a law firm. Hence, general training as either a transactional/business lawyer or as an advocate is important in getting the first job. But knowledge of the structure and function of the relevant entertainment/media segment and legal issues that often arise in that segment is also an important element in preparing a junior attorney to "hit the ground running" in an entertainment/media law practice. This will help prepare the graduate for the first entertainment/media law job, likely a "lateral" move from the more general position.
Like the other Concentrations, experiential- skills training is also important, both in helping the graduate succeed in his or her first job, and thereafter in his or her entertainment/media law position. But it is also important that the Concentration reflect training in a more generalized practice that is likely to be the graduate's first job.
Both of those distinctions demonstrate that a student seeking a Concentration in Entertainment & Media Law (1) should have the option to focus on preparation for a transactional law career or on an advocacy law career, and (2) should take advantage of some of the experiential components of our other Concentrations.