Dealmakers Impact Report 2012: Legal Eagles

Mayerson’s office is a clearinghouse for the wealthy of the world looking to invest in film. “Every week a new financing party comes in. There seems to be a never-ending source of capital that finds itself in Hollywood.” He works with high-net-worth folks — like financier Steven Rales, his Indian Paintbrush shingle and its sleeper hit “Moonrise Kingdom”– and heirs of wealth, like Megan Ellison, whom he used to represent. He repped Rise Entertainment in a five-year funding deal with Chris Columbus’ 1492 Pictures, and Endgame Entertainment, whose new Endgame Releasing P&A fund just helped market and distribute “Looper.” Earlier, Mayerson repped Ryan Kavanaugh’s Relativity Media on a landmark 2010 deal with Netflix that transformed distribution. Kavanaugh, whom Mayerson’s been with from the start, took films direct to the streaming service, skirting studio releasing partners and premium TV. So Netflix hired him in 2011 for an output deal with DreamWorks Animation, another industry first. “It’s hard work for the lawyers because it was never done before. We were making it up, borrowing concepts from an established window, established principles, and trying to apply them to a new platform. Netflix has had a template ever since,” he says. (Netflix just inked its biggest pact yet, with Disney last week) He works with key showbiz banks, including Bank of America, One West Bank, City National Bank, Union Bank and Wells Fargo.

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