Top HBO lawyers to teach at Magee

Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer, stars of HBO hit Tue Blood. photo: Prashant Gupta/HBO

Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer, stars of HBO hit Tue Blood. photo: Prashant Gupta/HBO

The University of Ulster has teamed up with some of the top lawyers representing and advising HBO, Sony, Paramount Pictures and the Discovery Channel, to deliver an exciting new international entertainment and media law course at Magee.

The Masters level short course has been designed to meet the growing industry need for legal professionals who have specific expertise in media, entertainment and sports law.

Ulster has secured the expertise of Russell Smith, a partner at renowned US law firm SmithDehn, which represents entertainment clients ranging from HBO and Sony Pictures, to Paramount Pictures and Channel Four.

Dr Eugene McNamee, Head of the University of Ulster’s School of Law said: “The legal sector in Northern Ireland and beyond is growing and developing in new directions, as is the demand for legal advice and services from the media and entertainment sectors.

“Ulster’s School of Law has developed this exciting practical course to meet this demand. We aim to equip law graduates with specialist, in-demand skills that should enhance their employability or add to an experienced practitioner’s specialist competence.

“Ulster is delighted to have secured such experienced, well respected and globally renowned practice lawyers to help deliver this new course.”

Smith will be joined by two of the top in-house lawyers at HBO; Viviane Eisenberg, Senior Vice President and Chief Counsel for Programming and Marketing, and Peter Rienecker, Vice President for Legal Affairs.

Eisenberg has structured HBO’s most significant international output deals in major overseas markets, including HBO Canada, BSkyB, Sky Germany, Foxtel in Australia, Sky New Zealand, France Telecom.

Prior to joining HBO in 1994, Peter practiced entertainment, media and intellectual property law at Phillips, Nizer, Benjamin, Krim & Ballon; Berger, Steingut, Tarnoff & Stern; and Robert V. Gaulin & Associates.

Also teaching the course will be Laura Farina, now a member of SmithDehn, but until recently Vice President for Legal Affairs at Discovery.

During her 12 years as in-house counsel for the world’s top non-fiction media company and all of its networks and business units (including The Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, Science and Investigation Discovery, and many others), with over 1.8 billion viewers in 209 countries, Ms. Farina was in charge of global litigation, supervised transactional work and content review for hundreds of programs and films, handled the company’s insurance matters (playing a key role in negotiating and drafting its media insurance policy), and generally served as a problem solver, risk manager and advisor to all of its networks and business units.

Demand for the course is expected to be high and space is limited to 25 places. Applications must be received by January 10, 2014.




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