LAUREN MENKES is a seasoned transactional entertainment attorney with over 25 years experience spanning all aspects of the television, literary, and motion picture industries. Lauren’s current roster of clients includes authors, screenwriters, speakers, journalists, directors, producers, actors/reality talent, models, business executives, graphic designers, literary agents and more. Lauren diligently guides her clients in connection with all aspects of the entertainment industry and in the protection of their intellectual property and brand status.
Prior to joining Boyarski Fritz LLP, Lauren had her own private practice for several years after working at Wise Entertainment Law, where she negotiated, drafted and revised reality television development and production contracts for the firm’s production company clients including talent and location access agreements, hold agreements, music licenses, releases (e.g., footage, location, talent, trademark) and co-production agreements with a variety of networks. There, she was also production counsel for numerous unscripted pilots and series as well as handled executive employment agreements and speaking engagement agreements for individual clients.
Prior to her private practice, Lauren spent most of her career in Los Angeles as a legal and business affairs executive for various companies including the major film studio Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, the television studio Walt Disney Television, the television network Comedy Central, the independent production/distribution companies Vidmark (now Lionsgate) and PorchLight Entertainment and the prominent talent agency United Talent Agency (UTA).
While at UTA from 2003 through 2009, Lauren negotiated television (reality and scripted), feature development and production contracts for individual and corporate clients of the agency, including a broad array of transactions such as test options for pilot/series, movies of the week, host, voice-over, commercials, endorsements, sponsorships, holding, blind script, staff writer, executive producer, director, overall and network license agreements. She also negotiated and drafted numerous option/purchase rights acquisition and shopping agreements for books, screenplays and/or life stories for the agency’s prominent author clients.
Prior to UTA, Lauren was Vice President of Business & Legal Affairs, West Coast for Comedy Central for over three years. At Comedy Central, Lauren negotiated and drafted development and production agreements for live action and animation programming, including format licenses and package fees. She also advised the company on clearance matters, location agreements, lease agreements for production offices and filming facilities, music and clip licensing, and labor issues.
Before joining Comedy Central, Lauren was Vice President of Business Affairs for PorchLight Entertainment for two years. As the company’s first and sole in-house counsel, she negotiated and drafted agreements for development, production, co-production, financing, acquisition and distribution, including broadcaster licensing agreements, AFMA licenses and ancillary rights agreements such as merchandising, music licensing, library rights collection, for non-union and union children’s and family entertainment programming.
Lauren is an active member of the New York and Maryland Bars and an inactive member of the California and District of Columbia Bars. Lauren graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. degree from Duke University and received her J.D. degree from Emory University School of Law.
Lauren is a Board Member of Women in Film & Video. She does pro bono legal work for Maryland Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts’ clients and participates in several other charitable activities. She resides in Bethesda, MD and frequently travels to NYC where she was born and raised.
(212) 920-4925 ext.107