William Archer

William Archer

Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith, LLP
Entertainment Attorney

Los Angeles, California

Member Since:
July 2013
Last online:
> 2 weeks ago
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About William

William Archer is one of the two Co-Chairs of the Entertainment Practice Group at Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP. Based in the Los Angeles office, Mr. Archer provides a full range of transactional, intellectual property and litigation services for clients throughout the entertainment industries, including motion picture, television, music, new media and publishing.

Mr. Archer regularly forms limited liability companies and other entities; provides start-up advice; prepares and negotiates agreements for acquisition of motion picture and other rights including option/acquisition agreements, purchase agreements, writer agreements and exclusive shopping agreements; drafts and negotiates financing agreements and related documents including private placement memoranda, loan agreements, equity financing agreements and hybrid loan/equity transactions including partially financing motion pictures through sales of tax credits. Mr. Archer also assists his production company clients with becoming signatories to the basic agreements with the WGA, SAG-AFTRA, DGA and IATSE and advises clients regarding relevant provisions under those agreements. He also regularly negotiates and drafts production contracts (with networks, producers, directors, actors, editors and others), recording contracts, co-publishing and exclusive songwriter agreements, record producer agreements, composer agreements, soundtrack album agreements, album financing agreements, synch and master use licenses, and distribution and licensing agreements; and handles clearance issues.

Mr. Archer recently has successfully negotiated contracts with or for ABC, E! Entertainment Network, Fuse Networks, Reveille Productions, Lifetime, Castle Pictures, Universal Music, E-One, CJ Entertainment and others. His clients include or have included Ashanti, Toni Braxton, Stephen Swid, Howard Shore, Danny Elfman, David Duchovny, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, Interscope, Zomba, Maverick, Kobalt, CJ Entertainment, PM Entertainment, and a number of other motion picture, television, commercial/video production, record and music publishing companies. Mr. Archer represents numerous international clients including clients in Germany, Austria, Italy, England, Scotland, Switzerland, France, Sweden, Finland, China, Korea and New Zealand.

Mr. Archer has litigated a wide range of entertainment industry disputes, including copyright, trademark, right of publicity, idea submission, contract, Talent Agencies Act, employment and reuse fee disputes. He also has represented entertainment industry clients in WGA, IFTA, AFMA and ICDR arbitrations.

Mr. Archer’s published articles/book chapters include: “Getting Real” (an analysis of right of publicity, copyright and other legal issues in the reality TV context), Los Angeles Lawyer, 28th Annual Entertainment Law Issue, May 2012; “Keeping Score: Music Rights in Film”, Los Angeles Lawyer, 25th Annual Entertainment Law Issue, May 2009; “From ‘Ace in the Hole’ to ‘Rounders’ – State and Federal Courts in California Have Dealt a Few Good Cards to Screenwriters and Other Idea Purveyors”, Entertainment, Publishing and the Arts Handbook 2006-2007 Edition, Thomson-West, 2006; and “Artists’ Rights: Understanding Them, Protecting Them and Fighting for Them”, Entertainment Settlements and Negotiations: Leading Lawyers on Contract Negotiations, Dispute Resolution and Litigation Issues in Entertainment and Sports Law, Aspatore Books, 2006.

Mr. Archer received his BA (philosophy/psychology), MA (philosophy) and JD from the University of Arizona where he also completed all of the course work for his Ph.D. in philosophy with a major in contemporary moral philosophy. He also taught philosophy for four years at the University of Arizona and has taken a number of film courses at UCLA.


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