New York, April 8, 2004—Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, one of the w…

New York, April 8, 2004—Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, one of the world’s leading law firms, will sponsor a Tuesday, April 13, 2004, luncheon seminar on recent developments in the intersection of celebrity publicity rights, the First Amendment and defamation. The seminar, which is designed for in-house counsel, will be held from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time in the Weil Gotshal Conference Center at the firm’s Manhattan headquarters in the General Motors Building at 767 Fifth Avenue. Attendees can also participate via a live videocast from Weil Gotshal’s Dallas, Silicon Valley and Washington, D.C., offices. The program will be hosted by R. Bruce Rich and Jonathan Bloom, partner and counsel, respectively, with Weil Gotshal.

A number of controversial recent cases have required courts to grapple with the issue of whether the unauthorized use of a celebrity’s name, image or likeness in an expressive work (i.e., not in advertising) is protected by the First Amendment, or whether it violates the celebrity’s right of publicity or the Lanham Act. Some of the same cases also have involved defamation claims, which have been resolved more easily. The seminar will navigate this challenging area of media law as it examines what publicity rights are and how they have been interpreted in important recent decisions involving Tiger Woods, Rosa Parks, the Three Stooges, Johnny and Edgar Winter, and Dustin Hoffman, among others.

Bruce Rich is a nationally recognized authority on intellectual property law, concentrating on the problems of communications industry clients, including book, magazine and newspaper publishers, broadcasters, cable television entities, and trade associations of these businesses. He is co-chair of Weil Gotshal’s Intellectual Property/Media practice, whose clients include the ABC and CBS Television Networks, the Television Music License Committee (representing the nation’s local television stations), USA Networks and Lifetime Television. Rich has served as lead trial counsel in significant copyright, music licensing, antitrust and libel cases for, among other clients, Random House, Warner Books, The Walt Disney Company, ABC, CBS, The New York Post and Reuters. He has represented the Association of American Publishers in its Supreme Court amicus curiae and other First Amendment activities.

Jonathan Bloom specializes in media and First Amendment, intellectual property, and art law. His practice includes counseling and litigation on behalf of news organizations, the Association of American publishers as well as individual publishers, and other clients in the areas of defamation, copyright and trademark infringement, misappropriation, and a wide range of First Amendment and related issues. He has written appellate briefs in cases involving electronic publication rights, the appropriate fault standard in New York private-figure defamation actions, libel in satire, and copyright protection for drug labeling, as well as amicus briefs to the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the Association of American Publishers and other media and First Amendment organizations in support of First Amendment challenges to the Child Pornography Prevention Act, the Child Online Protection Act, and the Children’s Internet Protection Act.
Seminar attendees will receive 1 to 1.5 CLE credits in professional practice for attending a seminar. For more information, including videocast addresses, contact Melissa Philips at 212-310-6848.

Remaining seminar topics and dates are “IP Pitfalls in Corporate Transactions,” May 11; and “Antitrust Issues in IP and Technology Transactions,” June 15.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP is an international law firm of more than 1,100 attorneys, including approximately 300 partners. Weil Gotshal is headquartered in New York, with offices in Austin, Boston, Brussels, Budapest, Dallas, Frankfurt, Houston, London, Miami, Munich, Paris, Prague, Silicon Valley, Singapore, Warsaw and Washington, D.C.
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