Litigator’s Fearless Pursuit Against Record Company Raises Public Awareness, Inspires Other Artists to Assert Digital Rights
Greenberg Glusker today announced that the Daily Journal recognized Firm Partner Bonnie E. Eskenazi as one of its 2012 “Top Women Lawyers” in the state of California. Renowned for handling some of Hollywood’s most significant, high stakes entertainment litigation, the Daily Journal touted Eskenazi’s role at the “forefront of challenging the methods major music companies use to account for digital downloads of their artists’ work.” In the past year, Eskenazi successfully resolved a multi-million dollar royalty accounting action on behalf of the estate of late reggae singer Bob Marley against Universal Music Group. The case was closely monitored by industry watchers country-wide, as it represented one of the first open challenges to the way record companies account to their artists for digital downloads. The Marley action publicly highlighted some of the wide-spread accounting irregularities record companies employ against their artists when reporting sales of digital downloads and helped pave the way for other musicians to pursue their royalty rights.
“Bonnie is unfailing in her commitment to her clients, fearless in her pursuit of their rights and equally effective in mentoring our next generation of attorneys,” said Managing Partner Stephen Smith. “We congratulate Bonnie for this richly deserved recognition.”
Eskenazi’s practice regularly encompasses high-profile litigation, including in several high stakes profit participation actions. Some of the most notable actions have been on behalf of the estate of JRR Tolkien (in connection with “The Lord of the Rings” movie trilogy), Jeffrey Katzenberg and Marvel Entertainment. Last year, Eskenazi also defeated efforts by Sony Pictures Entertainment to block the release by her client Hydraulx, a leading special effects company, of its alien invasion film Skyline.
Several legal and entertainment publications have honored Eskenazi during the past year. She was featured in Variety’s Women’s Impact Report, and was the only practicing attorney included among the more than 60 influential entertainment A-listers. She has also been named as one of a handful of women entertainment litigators on The Hollywood Reporter’s “Power Lawyer” list. In 2011, Chambers & Partners’ singled Ms. Eskenazi out as one of only five women lawyers that it recognized as a leading lawyer in media and entertainment litigation in the U.S. She was also recognized as a finalist by Chambers’ “USA Women in Law Awards” for her mentorship and leadership in creating and leading an all-women’s marketing group at the Firm.
A member of the Firm’s management committee since 2006, Eskenazi teaches a course on entertainment law at Stanford Law School, her alma mater. She also is a guest lecturer on entertainment law at Harvard Law School. Eskenazi is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Virginia.