Joe Calabrese is Chair of the firm’s Entertainment, Sports & Media Practice. Mr. Calabrese advises clients on the creation, operation, and financing of entertainment and media companies, including negotiating complex distribution and licensing agreements, mergers and acquisitions, and structured finance transactions. His practice also involves negotiating broadcast licensing and joint venture agreements and related transactions for sports entities.
Mr. Calabrese currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Constitutional Rights Foundation and is the Foundation’s past chair. He also serves on the Executive Board of the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television and the Cornell Law School Advisory Committee and is a member of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, and the Pacific Council on International Policy.
Mr. Calabrese has received the following accolades:
- The Daily Journal, “Top 100 California Lawyers” and “Top California Entertainment Lawyers”
- The Hollywood Reporter, “Hollywood's Top 20 Dealmakers” and “Top 100 Power Lawyers”
- Variety, “Dealmakers Impact Report” and "Legal Impact Report”
- SportsBusiness Journal, “Elite Power Players: Outside Counsel”
- Chambers, “Sports Law” and “Media & Entertainment”
- Best Lawyers, “Entertainment Law: Motion Pictures and Television and Sports Law”
- Century City Bar Association, “Entertainment Lawyer of the Year”
Mr. Calabrese’s recent experience includes representing:
- The Hollywood Foreign Press Association, producer of the Golden Globe awards show, in its broadcast and other entertainment industry transactions*
- Legendary Entertainment as primary outside counsel since its formation, including in connection with production, distribution, joint venture, acquisition, and financing transactions*
- Major motion picture studios such as Warner Bros. and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in their complex distribution, joint venture, acquisition, and financing transactions*
- Sports organizations and entities such as the International Olympic Committee, San Francisco Giants, Arizona Diamondbacks, San Diego Padres, and Anaheim Ducks in connection with various sports and entertainment transactions*
- Investment banks and private equity funds such as Soros Fund Management and Elliott Management in their structured finance/securitization and acquisition transactions*
*Represents experience from a previous law firm.
- 6th Annual International Film Finance Forum, Cannes, May 2015 (Moderator)
- “Global Market Update: State of Film Financing," International Film Finance Forum, Cannes, May 2012 (Speaker)