Talent Managers Applaud Failed Argument In Federal Courtroom
Los Angeles Daily Journal, February 13, 2018
California’s Talent Agencies Act has survived another challenge. On February 13, 2018, U.S. District Judge Christina Snyder said the remedies sought by the plaintiff were bettter sought from the state rather than the court. Glen A. Rothstein, an entertainment lawyer and CEO and Founder of Rothstein Law APC, said that while the law was originally implemented to protect talent from “the more unsavory parts of the industry,” it’s now being exploited by talent to avoid paying fees or to force managers to opt out of their contracts. “It’s almost been switched around,” Rothstein said. “The Act was implemented as a provision to protect fledglings in the industry, and nowadays they can use it more like a sword.”
Rothstein further noted that he felt the court didn’t recognize the vagueness of the procurement clause, as employment lines are constantly blurred in Hollywood. “In the real world, everyone’s doing a combination of everything. Managers are advising. Agents are procuring. And that’s where that problem of procurement comes into play. If the relationship between the client and the manager goes bad, they can just say, ‘OK, I’m firing you.’”
But Rothstein agrees with the court that the Legislature is likely the best step forward for talent managers seeking more clarity and change in the law. “The letter of the law itself is antiquated and outdated. There’s probably some middle ground that can be struck where talent is adequately protected but managers have a bit more clarity as to what constitutes procurement and what doesn’t,” Rothstein said.