John Berlinski is regarded as one of Hollywood’s most respected lawyers, with a practice focused on representing top actors, producers, directors, talent agencies, guilds, independent studios, casinos, resorts, and recording artists in their most significant disputes.
John has been at the forefront of some of the most hot-button legal issues facing the entertainment industry today, representing clients in high-stakes and high-profile licensing, distribution, intellectual property, residuals, and “backend” profit participation disputes. In a case that drew national attention, John represented the actor-producer Scarlett Johansson in her groundbreaking lawsuit alleging that The Walt Disney Company had improperly failed to release her film Black Widow as promised, opting instead for a “day-and-date” release on streaming service Disney+ that deprived Ms. Johansson of tens of millions of dollars in box office bonuses. John is also well renowned for his role in obtaining the largest award in the history of profit participation arbitration, on behalf of David Boreanaz, Emily Deschanel, and Kathy Reichs, the actors and author-producer behind the hit Fox television series Bones.
Prior to joining Bird Marella, John was the Chair of his prior law firm’s entertainment practice. Before that, he spent seven years at NBCUniversal, where he was the Senior Vice President & Head of West Coast Television Litigation. John has received numerous awards and accolades, including being recognized by Variety as a top entertainment litigator in its Legal Impact Report 2022: Top Attorneys Winning Cases and Making Deals in Hollywood; as one of Hollywood’s top attorneys by The Hollywood Reporter on its “Power Lawyers 2022: Hollywood Top 100 Attorneys” list; as an Entertainment Trailblazer by The American Lawyer; and by The National Law Journal for his groundbreaking work.