Summer Job Diaries: Entertainment Law Student Sees Future of Film Industry at IMAX
Transfer student Jennifer Cooper ’18 is spending her summer as a legal intern at IMAX. There, she is honing the skills needed to excel in transactional entertainment law and learning more about the legal, financial and business sides of the film industry.
How did you land your summer job?
I applied for the position at IMAX on the Indeed jobs website. I was particularly interested in IMAX because of the company’s focus on technology and entertainment, as well as their entry into the virtual reality marketplace. After I accepted my offer, IMAX joined Loyola Law School’s Technology Internship Program (TIP), and I attended a one-day technology boot camp hosted by the Career Development Office.
How did the Career Development Office help you secure the position?
My career counselor was very helpful throughout the spring semester, particularly with revising my cover letter and resume.
What is the most interesting part of your job?
Prior to working at IMAX, I only had experience working in music and television. Learning the legal, financial and business sides of the film industry has been great. IMAX interns also have the opportunity to go to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for weekend movie screenings and networking events, which have been really informative and fun.
What has been your most challenging assignment thus far?
The most challenging part of my job has definitely been rights analysis. I love copyright law, but trying to determine a drafter’s intent from agreements dating back to the 1970s can prove difficult. Additionally, the legal team handles every area of the IMAX Entertainment business; from international distribution deals with major studios, to sweepstakes rules for social media, to narration agreements with A-list talent. Being able to adapt quickly to the different facets of the company is a challenging, but an interesting part of working at a large entertainment company.
What new legal skill(s) have you acquired during your summer job?
Through my internship I have become a better contract drafter. My supervisors task me with drafting agreements from scratch and following them through to execution. This gives me an accurate understanding of what being a transactional attorney entails.
How has your Loyola education helped you make a difference in your placement?
As a transfer student, I feel so fortunate to be attending Loyola Law School. From the get-go, Loyola instilled the importance of practical experience. Moreover, I learned everything I know about contract drafting from two Loyola alumnae, Maritza Ruiz ‘10 and Heidi Tong ‘15, while working as their intern at Fox Cable Networks during the spring 2017 semester.
What LLS courses have you found most helpful to your position? Please explain.
Hands down, the most helpful course I have taken has been Professor Lee Strauss’ ‘96 Television Programming & Production Financing course. This course has been essential to my understanding of how entertainment is financed and distributed, as well as the importance of specific terms in contracts. Additionally, Professor Jay Dougherty’s Entertainment Law class and Professor David Steele’s Trademark class are great for learning theoretical concepts, which have been helpful in issue spotting and risk analysis at IMAX.
In what additional ways has Loyola helped you map your career path?
As a transfer student, Loyola has opened up so many doors for me. Through its reputation, its network and its alumni, I have had access to people, opportunities and resources that I would not have had otherwise, which makes me so appreciative to be a student at Loyola Law School.