Tuesday, 7 January 2014

US Media Law Firm SmithDehn eyes Northern Ireland

The US media law firm SmithDehn LLP has helped to create a media law course at the University of Ulster, furthering chances that the media law firm will establish operations in Northern Ireland. SmithDehn co-founder Russell Smith is on Twitter at (@rsmith8). Michael Cleaver of SmithDehn is also on Twitter (@mpcleave).

SmithDehn already has offices in London, but a Northern Ireland base would represent a further bridgehead into the European market and the growing entertainment economy in Northern Ireland. The move would also represent and a boon for the Northern Irish economy, possibly employing up to 75 legal professionals and be an attraction for further international investment.

Teaching local graduates begins in February 2014 and will run across 6 weekends. Dr. Eugene McNamee, Head of the Law School at UUJ, helped to create and will oversee the course. He said:
"The principal goal of the course is to create student employability to service the growing media and entertainment sector. The teaching will be problem-based and practical, with an aim to create a “work-ready” group of graduates for legal services in the film, television, and sports industries."
The UUJ course has a strong teaching team, including Prash Naik, Controller of Legal and Compliance at Channel 4; Viviane Eisenberg, HBO's Senior Vice President and Chief Counsel for Programming and Marketing; Peter Rienecker, HBO's Vice President for Legal Affairs. Russell Smith, a co-founder of SmithDehn, is based in New York but will lead the team. Other "Visiting Professors" who may assist are legendary media insurance expert Chad Milton, as well as SmithDehn attorneys Frank Dehn, Michael Delehanty, Andrew Baker, and Michael Cleaver.

The Lawyer Magazine covers it here. The BBC covers it here. Northern Ireland Screen has it here. QUB Law Society has it here.


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