1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Mon Apr 13, 2015 9:58 pm

TheDogWhisperer wrote:I mentioned to a partner/recruiter once that I was interested in these area and he laughed and said "its just law with different clients".


Not sure what the point of this is. Of course its law, and i'm pretty sure who your clients are matters more than almost anything else in determining how much you like your job, after the top-level of what the job entails (i.e. lit, transactional, etc).

One of the things I realized during my 2L summer is that I had no interest in working for big banks or PE funds. I think a lot of law students/lawyers fail to take advantage of one very unique element of legal practice, which is that you almost have a blank slate to pick a new industry to go into once you graduate. Sure, you're a lawyer, but the industry that makes up your client-base is largely within your control as a young lawyer. Like tech? go to silicon valley and work for Cooley or something. wish you were a banker? go to skadden and do M&A. Should have gone into energy/oil? Head down to texas and try one of those firms.

Too many lawyers get caught up in name-brand firms and vault rankings without thinking about who they'll really be working for. Find your passion in the client-base and substantive work and build your career that way. I guarantee the guy who figured out he really likes project finance and is at milbank doesn't give a shit he couldn't get V5.

BNA
Posts: 342
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2015 4:44 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby BNA » Mon Apr 13, 2015 10:38 pm

Nashville has a pretty healthy set of "entertainment boutiques" that are usually comprised of 4-6 members with an associate or two. The bigger firms here eat up the rest of the business under their IP divisions. My family is in the music business, and it may be the direction I lean toward. Of course, that's assuming the grades and opportunities are in line. My $.02, though, for anyone really set on getting into that genre, is to get a handle on the industry before law school. Intern with publishers and licensing companies. The music industry is vast, and much more complex than most realize. If you want a job with an entertainment group and can't give details about royalty structures or licensing agreements, you're dead in the water.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Apr 14, 2015 3:55 pm

desola wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:2L with a biglaw SA lined up for this summer in LA. This late in the game, do you think there is any chance at making a move like you did and somehow get an offer to an entertainment firm after graduation? I was just under the impression that none of them hired straight out of law school---they all say to do some biglaw first. If possible, I would love to skip the biglaw.


I switched as a 3L, after I got an offer from my 2L firm, so no its definitely not too late. In fact I would say that 3L is the best time to do it.

I was also under the same impression as you, the firm i'm at now said "go to biglaw then lateral back here." But every firm needs junior associates they can bill out at low rates. If things are busy there will be interest. Honestly any firm that has a categorical "no first years" rule seems pretty stupid to me, unless their billing rates are low enough that a third year bills out at the equivalent of a first year elsewhere.

The last thing i'll say is that I feel like some of these firms use the ability to land biglaw as a proxy, for both (i) your general ability to be hired and do the work and (ii) your genuine commitment to entertainment work. Once they know you lasted 10 weeks at a vault firm and got an offer they may be more inclined to extend the offer for you as a first year if the genuine interest is there. And if after all that your'e still 100% on entertainment, they'll know the commitment/passion is there.

TL;DR - get an offer at your vault firm, continue to express strong interest in the entertainment firm, and go back as a 3L and say 'look this is what i want to do can I start with you'.


Great, thanks a lot. Would you just recommend hitting up all firms in socal that are ranked by chambers? I'm definitely not opposed to just resume blasting everywhere I can find.

desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Tue Apr 14, 2015 8:45 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
desola wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:2L with a biglaw SA lined up for this summer in LA. This late in the game, do you think there is any chance at making a move like you did and somehow get an offer to an entertainment firm after graduation? I was just under the impression that none of them hired straight out of law school---they all say to do some biglaw first. If possible, I would love to skip the biglaw.


I switched as a 3L, after I got an offer from my 2L firm, so no its definitely not too late. In fact I would say that 3L is the best time to do it.

I was also under the same impression as you, the firm i'm at now said "go to biglaw then lateral back here." But every firm needs junior associates they can bill out at low rates. If things are busy there will be interest. Honestly any firm that has a categorical "no first years" rule seems pretty stupid to me, unless their billing rates are low enough that a third year bills out at the equivalent of a first year elsewhere.

The last thing i'll say is that I feel like some of these firms use the ability to land biglaw as a proxy, for both (i) your general ability to be hired and do the work and (ii) your genuine commitment to entertainment work. Once they know you lasted 10 weeks at a vault firm and got an offer they may be more inclined to extend the offer for you as a first year if the genuine interest is there. And if after all that your'e still 100% on entertainment, they'll know the commitment/passion is there.

TL;DR - get an offer at your vault firm, continue to express strong interest in the entertainment firm, and go back as a 3L and say 'look this is what i want to do can I start with you'.


Great, thanks a lot. Would you just recommend hitting up all firms in socal that are ranked by chambers? I'm definitely not opposed to just resume blasting everywhere I can find.


I wouldn't recommend spamming firms. Instead, try and built up and cultivate relationships at those firms. Because these firms are smaller, hiring isn't really as much in the hands of a recruiter. The way it worked with me was a partner I had a good relationship with reached out to me when they needed someone. Thats not at all how it happens at biglaw, so the standard outside-of-OCI attempts at getting a job don't apply. If the firm knows you, not only will they reach out to you if there is an opening that they think you're right for, but they'll be more convinced that you have a genuine interest/commitment to working there.

It requires more effort but if its what you want you should do it. I found the time and it paid off.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Apr 15, 2015 7:02 pm

desola wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
desola wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:2L with a biglaw SA lined up for this summer in LA. This late in the game, do you think there is any chance at making a move like you did and somehow get an offer to an entertainment firm after graduation? I was just under the impression that none of them hired straight out of law school---they all say to do some biglaw first. If possible, I would love to skip the biglaw.


I switched as a 3L, after I got an offer from my 2L firm, so no its definitely not too late. In fact I would say that 3L is the best time to do it.

I was also under the same impression as you, the firm i'm at now said "go to biglaw then lateral back here." But every firm needs junior associates they can bill out at low rates. If things are busy there will be interest. Honestly any firm that has a categorical "no first years" rule seems pretty stupid to me, unless their billing rates are low enough that a third year bills out at the equivalent of a first year elsewhere.

The last thing i'll say is that I feel like some of these firms use the ability to land biglaw as a proxy, for both (i) your general ability to be hired and do the work and (ii) your genuine commitment to entertainment work. Once they know you lasted 10 weeks at a vault firm and got an offer they may be more inclined to extend the offer for you as a first year if the genuine interest is there. And if after all that your'e still 100% on entertainment, they'll know the commitment/passion is there.

TL;DR - get an offer at your vault firm, continue to express strong interest in the entertainment firm, and go back as a 3L and say 'look this is what i want to do can I start with you'.


Great, thanks a lot. Would you just recommend hitting up all firms in socal that are ranked by chambers? I'm definitely not opposed to just resume blasting everywhere I can find.


I wouldn't recommend spamming firms. Instead, try and built up and cultivate relationships at those firms. Because these firms are smaller, hiring isn't really as much in the hands of a recruiter. The way it worked with me was a partner I had a good relationship with reached out to me when they needed someone. Thats not at all how it happens at biglaw, so the standard outside-of-OCI attempts at getting a job don't apply. If the firm knows you, not only will they reach out to you if there is an opening that they think you're right for, but they'll be more convinced that you have a genuine interest/commitment to working there.

It requires more effort but if its what you want you should do it. I found the time and it paid off.


This might be a dumb question, but is the theory that I should accept a full time offer and then renege later on? Or should I keep the offer open while I shop around? I would image the window when I have an offer yet haven't yet accepted is rather narrow. Thanks so much for all of your help, I've just really realized that it's entertainment or nothing for me.

desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Wed Apr 15, 2015 11:23 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
desola wrote:
This might be a dumb question, but is the theory that I should accept a full time offer and then renege later on? Or should I keep the offer open while I shop around? I would image the window when I have an offer yet haven't yet accepted is rather narrow. Thanks so much for all of your help, I've just really realized that it's entertainment or nothing for me.


Depends, obviously. If you can get something in time you won't need to renege. I think however that a lot of the drama over reneging is overblown on TLS. If you want to renege and have another offer, do it. You're 100% fungible to biglaw.

desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Fri Jul 17, 2015 10:38 am

Bumping for OCI season. Happy to answer any questions about entertainment/media track for those going into general biglaw, or OCI approach for those interesting in going straight into this area.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jul 17, 2015 3:22 pm

I have a 2L SA and I hated the firm, desperately looking to make connections & network into where you are. Don't know what advice you could have, but its nice to remember its possible. :(

desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Fri Jul 17, 2015 4:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I have a 2L SA and I hated the firm, desperately looking to make connections & network into where you are. Don't know what advice you could have, but its nice to remember its possible. :(


Look, its definitely possible. But a lot of luck plays in. Make those connections and network, because it WILL pay off if you are aggressive and follow up. This is exactly how I got my job. If you are truly interested and passionate about this area, then it shouldn't be a problem to convey a legitimate interest. They'll remember that and if you make it clear you want to work with them, they'll reach out when something comes up. Good luck

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 18, 2015 3:07 pm

I'll take you up on the bump.

I'm a bit more interested in the media/First Amendment side than the entertainment side -- reporting/journalism background -- but still wanted to ask if you had any advice as to: (1) particular firms to reach out to, and (2) what the work is like for attorneys more on the media side.

For background: I'm ranked No. 1/2/3 at a T25. Rising 2L currently at a SA gig in a secondary market. Have sent out cold applications to a few D.C./NY firms already, but am very open to more advice/suggestions.

desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Sat Jul 18, 2015 6:07 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'll take you up on the bump.

I'm a bit more interested in the media/First Amendment side than the entertainment side -- reporting/journalism background -- but still wanted to ask if you had any advice as to: (1) particular firms to reach out to, and (2) what the work is like for attorneys more on the media side.

For background: I'm ranked No. 1/2/3 at a T25. Rising 2L currently at a SA gig in a secondary market. Have sent out cold applications to a few D.C./NY firms already, but am very open to more advice/suggestions.


I do a good amount of media work. I think i mentioned this above but one common misconception a lot of law students have is that "media law = first amendment work," which is not actually the case in the legal world. media law can either equal 1st amendment work (such as working for newspapers/magazines/publishers), but it just as often, if not more, means working for media companies and advertisers. The difference between the two is that the latter often have little 1st amendment protections because what they're doing is commercial speech. this also means that they don't often qualify for fair use arguments in copyright, etc.

other than that the work is VERY similar. its reviewing output (whether its copy or journalism) on a legal level. also, both have a lot of overlap. honestly i find the media company/advertiser work to be far more interesting because there are a lot more trademark/copyright/right of publicity issues, which the news orgs easily get around. the advertiser work can also be heavily regulatory, if that is what you're into (i.e. if you represent a food/drug company) also, a lot of what my work does for media companies is on the promotional/talent side, which is also interesting, and i dont' think the 1st amendment shops do much of that. all in all, i think advertising/media company work is far more varied than classic 1st amendment work. however, i can see the draw of eventually working in house at a NYT/New Yorker/Gawker, etc.

Long way of saying: are you interested in both types of work? What firms are on your radar? I can give you a sense of the top for each, but are you only looking east coast?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 18, 2015 7:12 pm

Very much appreciate the response. If you asked me to be as picky as I want to be, I'd likely gravitate more toward First Amendment work (again, newspaper background), but I'm interested in pursuing both strands under the overall umbrella of media law.

As for location, I'm geographically neutral. Hometown/law school are each in non-coast secondary markets, so no connections anywhere big, but I honestly would not be particular about working in D.C. or NY or CA or Chicago. Again, if I was to be picky, I'd go for D.C. first, but I'm pretty fine wherever.

desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Sat Jul 18, 2015 7:18 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Very much appreciate the response. If you asked me to be as picky as I want to be, I'd likely gravitate more toward First Amendment work (again, newspaper background), but I'm interested in pursuing both strands under the overall umbrella of media law.

As for location, I'm geographically neutral. Hometown/law school are each in non-coast secondary markets, so no connections anywhere big, but I honestly would not be particular about working in D.C. or NY or CA or Chicago. Again, if I was to be picky, I'd go for D.C. first, but I'm pretty fine wherever.


For DC, Levine Sullivan, Davis Wright Tremaine, or Williams Connolly for 1st amendment. Venable or Kelley Drye for advertiser/regulatory.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 21, 2015 7:57 pm

Thank you much. Those are definitely firms I'm crossing my fingers will work out.

Might be asking too much of you, but care to share any others (DC, NY, LA) that are perhaps a bit less "Google-able" -- i.e. firms that don't appear on Chambers but are still worth applying to?

Just trying to cast a broad net to land a gig.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 21, 2015 8:06 pm

I had an informational interview with a partner from one of the DC based firms you mentioned. She invited me to apply (I'm the above desparate anon). Advice on cover letter pitching myself? Background is music, then a year working at ©/™ Botique.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 23, 2015 3:23 am

Advice on applying to BigLaw firms with entertainment practices? I know those aren't boutiques (and that they tend to do the finance side of things rather than talent work), but maybe you have some thoughts...

desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Thu Jul 23, 2015 8:22 am

Anonymous User wrote:I had an informational interview with a partner from one of the DC based firms you mentioned. She invited me to apply (I'm the above desparate anon). Advice on cover letter pitching myself? Background is music, then a year working at ©/™ Botique.


Just make sure your interest is genuine and legitimately connected to what they do. Make sure you do your research (talk to associates, if possible) so you can accurately convey a connection between your interest and their work. If you imply you will be doing something they don't do, it will be a turn off. This goes especially with the music background. If they don't do music work, try and figure out a way to connect the music background (music --> arts --> media --> creative clients, etc etc) to their work.

I know that's vague, but conveying a legitimate interest goes a long way.

desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Thu Jul 23, 2015 8:28 am

Anonymous User wrote:Advice on applying to BigLaw firms with entertainment practices? I know those aren't boutiques (and that they tend to do the finance side of things rather than talent work), but maybe you have some thoughts...


My biggest piece of advice is to get a solid read on the extent to which the entertainment group is hiring and/or the extent to which you can join that group. For example, Paul Weiss used to aggressively advertise their media/entertainment group. Turns out it was basically one partner who worked with a couple associates (partner since left). Conveying an interest in that group was an auto-ding because everyone who worked their knew you weren't going to get into that group. The opposite applies to a place like O'Melveny LA. And don't confuse offices. Don't pitch your interest in entertainment to the O'Melveny New York office.

Also, don't say you only want to do entertainment. If there is actually a strong practice, convey an interest in it as well as with other groups.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 23, 2015 1:51 pm

What do you mean by "the opposite" applies to O'Melveny LA? It's very easy to get into those entertainment groups - and do you mean O'Melveny LA or Century City?

desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:43 pm

Anonymous User wrote:What do you mean by "the opposite" applies to O'Melveny LA? It's very easy to get into those entertainment groups - and do you mean O'Melveny LA or Century City?


sorry thats what i meant. i meant that a place like o'melveny is a place where saying you want to join there entertainment group is legitimate.

desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Sat Nov 07, 2015 4:38 pm

Back on here after a long break if anyone has anymore questions

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 13, 2015 3:33 am

desola wrote:Back on here after a long break if anyone has anymore questions


What are some of the differences you've seen between entertainment boutiques and entertainment groups at large firms? Do both provide similiar experiences and exit opportunities for associates? Are the lawyers viewed the same within the industry? If you had the option between big law entertainment and boutique entertainmemt, what would you have leaned toward?

desola
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:26 pm

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby desola » Sat Nov 28, 2015 1:28 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
desola wrote:Back on here after a long break if anyone has anymore questions


What are some of the differences you've seen between entertainment boutiques and entertainment groups at large firms?


Not all groups/firms are the same, but in general I'd say that junior associates' experience at larger firms track are less substantive, and more diligence/discovery heavy.

Do both provide similiar experiences and exit opportunities for associates?


Again, this depends. Big law groups will for the most part have broader exit options, but some of the boutiques may have more interesting/unique/desirable exit options.

Are the lawyers viewed the same within the industry?
not sure what this means. Both are great ways to get a start as long as your group is well respected

If you had the option between big law entertainment and boutique entertainmemt, what would you have leaned toward?


Can't answer so broadly. You'd have to name specific firms/markets

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Mar 25, 2016 11:00 pm

Was hoping to bump this to ask a couple questions on entertainment law:

1) Work: In entertainment law I know a lot of the job is "negotiating deals" for clients but I was hoping for some more detail on what this consists of--is this drafting contracts? Or more negotiating the details of a contract (i.e. pay, back-end, licensing, etc.)?

2) Lifestyle: what are you hours like day to day? Are the lawyers at the top LA talent boutiques constantly jerked around at the behest of clients or is the predictability/lifestyle a better than biglaw/finance? I come from a finance background and what is worse than than the long hours is the unpredictability of it.

3) Pay progression: You mentioned pay was slightly lower than market coming out of law school, how does that progress as you move up the firm?

Thanks for doing this!

Anonymous User
Posts: 273567
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1st yr at media/entertainment boutique - taking Qs

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Mar 26, 2016 12:02 am

Anonymous User wrote:Was hoping to bump this to ask a couple questions on entertainment law:

1) Work: In entertainment law I know a lot of the job is "negotiating deals" for clients but I was hoping for some more detail on what this consists of--is this drafting contracts? Or more negotiating the details of a contract (i.e. pay, back-end, licensing, etc.)?

2) Lifestyle: what are you hours like day to day? Are the lawyers at the top LA talent boutiques constantly jerked around at the behest of clients or is the predictability/lifestyle a better than biglaw/finance? I come from a finance background and what is worse than than the long hours is the unpredictability of it.

3) Pay progression: You mentioned pay was slightly lower than market coming out of law school, how does that progress as you move up the firm?

Thanks for doing this!


Great questions! I'll be waiting for a reply!!




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.