The latest issue of The Hollywood Reporter includes the trade publication's "Power Lawyers" list, and on the corporate side of things, the list includes Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP and Affiliates, the law firm that represented The Walt Disney Company in its $4.05 billion acquisition of Lucasfilm Ltd. The article is short (THR did one of these profiles for each of the firms and lawyers on its list) but pretty interesting. Here's an excerpt about the process of tracing the legal rights for the Star Wars franchise back to their current holders:
[Disney lead attorney Brian] McCarthy, the head of [Skadden Arps'] Los Angeles office, narrowed the task down to 290 primary, copyrighted characters. To sort through them all, he assembled a legal team of bona fide Star Wars fans. “I tried to find people in the office who ... didn’t have to spend time figuring out who Princess Leia was,” recalls McCarthy. “I was shocked by how many people knew the intricacies of whose father-in-law was married to whose sister.” The top-secret process — code names were employed to keep office chatter to a minimum — started in June 2012, and crunch time came during a six-week period beginning in August, when as many as 20 Skadden employees (from $500-an-hour partners to less expensive paralegals) pored over complex chain-of-title documents related to Star Wars and Lucasfilm.Click through to THR for the rest of the profile. Thanks to Club Jade for spotting this link.