Our People

Partners & Consultants

  • David Andrews

    David Andrews

    Head of Employment

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7599

    David is a partner at Lee & Thompson and head of the firm's Employment Group.

    He has many years of experience advising on contentious and non-contentious employment matters for a range of individuals and businesses, including those in TV, live events, marketing & brands, digital, fashion, publishing, sport, music, gaming, bio-tech, pharmaceuticals, software development and technology.

    He advises on all types of employment matters including contracts, disciplinary issues, grievances, restructuring and redundancies, workplace harassment, performance management issues, unfair dismissal, unlawful discrimination, wrongful dismissal, breach of contract and disputes concerning post-termination restrictive covenants.

    David has a wealth of experience in relation to mergers and acquisitions, business start-ups, outsourcing arrangements and "TUPE” transfers. He regularly advises in relation to, and drafts, the full range of employment documentation.

    Also fully versed in corporate and commercial issues David advises clients in relation to matters such as joint venture arrangements, merchandising deals, supply agreements, master services agreements, outsourcing, live performance contracts, branding, and framework agreements.

    David is a member of the Employment Lawyers Association, has a degree in law from Warwick University and attended Chester School of Law.

    David Andrews

  • Reno Antoniades

    Reno Antoniades

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7666

    Reno is Managing Partner of Lee & Thompson.

    He trained at the City firm Herbert Smith and spent the first two years of his career in their corporate department. It was at Olswang where he began his career in the film and television industries acting principally for independent production companies, sales companies and distributors. In 1994 Reno joined Lee & Thompson where he has built up the Film & Television practice from a near standing start to where it is today. With 22 fee earners, the Group is acknowledged as being the largest team of lawyers in the UK working in the creative audio-visual sector.

    Recognised for his extensive experience and ability to manage and close complex deals, Reno has, for many years, been acknowledged by the industry as one of the leading film and television content lawyers in the UK and represents an extensive list of film and television production companies. One client remarked 'I doubt there is a lawyer in the UK who better understands the independent film sector' (Chambers & Partners) and the Legal 500 directory described him as 'the best film and TV lawyer in the business'.

    He is a regular speaker at industry events and seminars both in the UK and internationally.

    Reno has been ranked as a Band 1 in his field in Chambers & Partners and Legal 500 for more than a decade.

    Reno Antoniades

  • Mark Ashelford

    Mark Ashelford

    Head of Digital

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Mark has over 15 years' experience in the music industry and heads Lee & Thompson's Digital Media Group. He has been a partner at the firm since 2004.

    Mark has been actively involved in digital media for many years and is regarded for his knowledge and understanding of the area, being recognised by the Legal 500 for this work. He works with a broad range of clients including start-ups, record labels, community sites, games developers, streaming services, aggregators, retailers and content owners. He also regularly speaks to industry on the subject.

    In the music and entertainment industry, Mark continues to work with new and established artists in all aspects of their careers, but lending to this his specialty knowledge in the areas of digital music, sponsorship and merchandising (including book publishing). He currently works with such artists as Katie Melua, One Direction, Katherine Jenkins and Queen.

    Due to Mark's expertise across a number of disciplines and the increasing convergence of these disciplines in the digital space, Mark has particular experience in advising on multiplatform projects.

    Mark Ashelford

  • Martyn Bailey

    Martyn Bailey

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0) 20 3073 7557

    Martyn is a partner in the firm’s Dispute Resolution Group.

    Prior to joining Lee & Thompson in 2016, Martyn spent ten years as a partner at Forbes Anderson Free, a highly respected boutique practice specialising in litigation and dispute resolution. He was previously a partner at The Simkins Partnership (now Michael Simkins) and trained at the city firm, Macfarlanes.

    Martyn’s practice encompasses both entertainment and commercial litigation.

    He represents clients in a diverse range of industries including film, music, sport, leisure, investment and private equity, and financial services.

    Martyn handles disputes on a wide range of legal issues. In particular, he advises on disputes relating to a range of specialist contracts in different industries. He has expertise in copyright, trade mark and passing off including online IP matters.  He is experienced in  professional negligence and in shareholder, director and partnership disputes.  He also advises on regulatory issues.

    Martyn has extensive High Court experience including obtaining and defending interim injunction applications. He is also experienced in arbitration, adjudication, the copyright tribunal and mediation. 

    His music industry practice experience includes advising longstanding clients Ministry of Sound, PIAS/Co-Op and the Beggars Group in addition to publishers, artists and managers.

    In film and television, he acts for UK and US film and television producers, distributors, financiers, agents, writers and actors including GFM Films and SP Sales and Distribution, FilmOn TV, Tony Wood and John Noel Management.

    In his commercial litigation practice, Martyn has recently successfully concluded a matter for private equity firm Risk Capital Partners and an LCIA Arbitration for Leventis Overseas Limited.

    Chambers & Partners recognises Martyn for his music and film litigation practice and notes that his clients appreciate his “intellectual and pragmatic approach to conflict resolution”.

    Martyn Bailey

  • James Beshoff

    James Beshoff

    Consultant

    Telephone+44 (0) 7710066486

    James (Jim) is a consultant to Lee & Thompson's Corporate & Commercial Group, specialising in corporate transactional work.

    Jim qualified in 1986 and went onto to become equity partner in the Corporate Department at the City practice of what is now DACBeachcroft. During this time, he dealt with many large corporate transactions including:-

    •  privatisation of the water industry;
    • establishment of Virgin Direct (now Virgin Money);
    • acquisition of Petplan insurance;
    • merger of Coca-Cola bottling companies to create Coca-Cola HBC AG.

    After nearly 20 years in the City, Jim moved to establish his own practice, Beshoffs Solicitors, advising on 'smaller' corporate transactions for a range of clients across a broad spectrum of industries, with a focus on owner-managed businesses and clients.

    He advises on a variety of corporate transactions including start-ups, joint venture arrangements, private equity investments, shareholders agreements, reorganisations and share & asset sales and disposals.  Jim’s approach to corporate transactions is establishing clear process and documentation, with expertise in negotiation.

    Notable recent deals that Jim has advised on include:-

    • sale of further stake in Baby Cow Productions to BBC Worldwide;
    • funding rounds and secondary sales in relation to Notonthehighstreet.com;
    • sale of interest in Independent Talent Group Limited ;
    • buy out of interests for the management of TRIPP luggage.

    James Beshoff

  • Dominic Bray

    Dominic Bray

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7558

    Dominic is a partner in the firm's Dispute Resolution Group.

    Prior to joining Lee & Thompson in 2016, Dominic was a partner at Forbes Anderson Free, a highly respected boutique practice specialising in litigation, arbitration and dispute resolution for clients in the media and entertainment industries.  Before joining Forbes Anderson Free, Dominic headed the IP, Media & Technology group in the London office of international law firm, K&L Gates.

    Dominic is an experienced and pragmatic lawyer with a focus on dispute resolution in intellectual property, media and entertainment, technology and sport.   He also advises on regulatory compliance and enforcement in a range of areas including data protection, and marketing and advertising.  Drawing on his dispute resolution experience Dominic regularly advises on commercial negotiations and drafting, contract termination and renegotiation, and on risk assessment and clearance issues.  He is particularly active in the marketing and advertising sector,working with agencies, advertisers, ad networks, and the Marketing Agencies Association (providing the MAA's Legal Advisory and Pitch Protection services).  

    He is Chair of the Media Group of the Society of Computers of Law, a board adviser to the Marketing Agencies Association, and a member of INTA (the International Trade Mark Association) and the Computer Law Group. 

    He is recommended by Chambers & Partners (IP) and Legal 500 (Brand Management) where he is noted for his ability to "get to the heart of the problem", reflecting his focus on providing pragmatic, commcerially-focussed, risk-senstive solutions.

    Dominic Bray

  • Mike Brookes

    Mike Brookes

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7632

    Mike is a partner at Lee & Thompson and head of the firm's Reputation Protection Group. He is also a key member of the firm's Dispute Resolution team.

    He joined Lee & Thompson in 1998 and has played a key role in creating the firm's reputation for quality dispute resolution, handling the full range of copyright and contractual disputes for clients within the industries of music, film, television and sport, and ranging from artists and actors to record labels and production companies.

    Much of his work involves protecting the reputation of some of the firm's highest profile clients. Various battles with the press have been fought and won for well-known names, such as One Direction and its members, Peter Andre, David and Victoria Beckham, Frankie Boyle, Charlotte Church, Christopher Eccleston and Nicole Appleton. He has also acted for a number of prominent figures in industry and politics.

    Recognised for his knowledgeable and personable approach to matters, the most recent issue of the legal directory, Chambers & Partners, describes him as 'a strong figure' and 'sensible, shrewd and commercially aware'.

    These attributes have been reflected in a number of high profile claims Mike has successfully brought for clients, and demonstrate the scope of Mike's practice.

    In 2014 Mike secured a rare anti-harassment injunction against the paparazzi for Harry Styles, for which he was acknowledged as Lawyer of the Week by The Times newspaper. In 2012 he successfully represented Charlotte Church and her parents in their well publicised "phone hacking" claim against the News of the World, holding out longer than any other of the victims going to trial. The Churches were paid £600,000 in damages and costs, one of the highest settlements in the entire phone hacking scandal. He is currently representing one of the 8 hacking victims bringing similar claims against the Mirror.

    2012 also saw Mike successfully suing the Mirror for defamation on behalf of longstanding client Frankie Boyle who obtained damages of over £50,000 after the paper wrongly labelled him a racist.

    Also fully immersed in the film and television world, Mike has a significant copyright and defamation clearance practice acting for producer clients on major feature films and television productions, including "Rush" for Revolution Films, "Les Miserables" for Working Title; and "Spooks" and "Broadchurch" for Kudos. 

    The new UK edition of Chambers and Partners ranks Mike as a Band 1 leader in his field.

    Mike is a Trustee of the Peter Andre Foundation which supports Cancer Research UK.

    Mike Brookes

  • Mary Burrows

    Mary Burrows

    Partner

    Telephone+44(0)20 3073 7689

    Mary is a partner in Lee & Thompson's Television Group.

    She joined the firm in 2013 after 13 years at FremantleMediaUK (previously TalkbackTHAMES) where most recently she was Head of Legal and Business Affairs for Drama and Scripted Comedy. While at Fremantle Mary gained considerable expertise in negotiating and advising on the production and exploitation of drama, factual, comedy and entertainment programmes. She also acquired experience in managing complex multi-party deals including co-productions, as well as general corporate matters.

    Mary's time at Fremantle has given her a well-rounded understanding of the domestic and international television landscape and an ability to offer invaluable strategic commercial advice to her clients.

    Prior to working at Fremantle, Mary gained experience working in production on factual programming.

    Mary originally qualified as a Barrister and Solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand, and has a Law degree and an Arts degree majoring in psychology.

    Since joining Lee & Thompson Mary has been advising a wide range of television clients on matters involving rights acquisition, distribution, formats, clearance and content, commissioning and financing with a particular focus on acting for TV production companies.

    Mary Burrows

  • Lawrence Engel

    Lawrence Engel

    Head of Music

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Lawrence is a partner at Lee & Thompson and heads the firm's highly regarded Music Group.

    He started his career in 1994 and joined Lee & Thompson in 2009 having previously co-founded and run his own niche music law firm.

    Lawrence has experience across all aspects of the music industry and represents an extensive list of recording artists, songwriters, producers, DJs, managers and music industry executives. Clients commend his straight forward, practical approach commenting that he "knows the business well, is very pragmatic and is good at cutting through the issues and getting the job done." (Chambers & Partners)

    The Music Group's client base currently includes some of the industry's most successful and well known international acts with Lawrence representing the likes of One Direction, Jessie J, Little Mix, 5 Seconds of Summer (through One Mode Productions), Ministry of Sound and MNEK.

    The current UK edition of Chambers & Partners ranks Lawrence as a leader in his field.

    He is also a Trustee of The JLS Foundation which is currently committed to raising funds for Cancer Research UK.

    Lawrence Engel

  • Will Everitt

    Will Everitt

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Will is a partner in the firm's Music Group having specialised in music and entertainment law since qualification. He also heads up the firm's Theatre practice.

    Will's music clients include record labels, publishers, managers, producers, DJs and artists all of whom value the tailored advice he can give across the whole range of music industry contracts and related intellectual property matters. Will also has significant experience advising on live events, touring arrangements, sponsorship and endorsements. In 2013, Will was instructed to represent the interests of all 48 contestants in the third series The Voice UK (BBC One).

    As a founder member of the firm's Theatre Group Will also represents a number creative clients including composers, authors, actors and orchestrators providing bespoke advice across the whole spectrum of contractual, legal and commercial issues surrounding the development and production of stage plays and musical theatre.

    In addition, Will adds his experience and expertise to the firm's Digital Media Group, regularly advising clients on the acquisition and exploitation of content via digital media and the laws relating to the internet, e-commerce, and data protection.

    Will Everitt

  • Andrew Forbes

    Andrew Forbes

    Dispute Resolution

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7555

    Andrew is a partner at Lee & Thompson and head of the firm’s Dispute Resolution Group.

    Prior to joining Lee & Thompson in 2016, Andrew spent 14 years as the managing partner of Forbes Anderson Free, a highly respected boutique practice specialising in litigation, arbitration and dispute resolution for clients in the media and entertainment industries.

    The prominent legal directory, Chambers and Partners, recognises Andrew as a leading practitioner in the field of intellectual property. He is singled out as a ‘Star Individual’ in contentious music matters and is described as ‘an unparalleled force in the music industry’ as well as a ‘spectacularly successful litigator’.

    Andrew has developed a substantial client following that includes high profile artists, composers and rights holders as well as music industry bodies. In recent years he has been shown to be a prominent force in the music industry’s attempts to combat online piracy of digitally recorded music, shaping the approach to blocking injunction applications on behalf of British Phonographic Industry (BPI) and its members.

    In other recent cases of note, Andrew acted for Sony/ATV Music Publishing in preventing the cinematic release of a film featuring the unauthorised reproduction of substantial excerpts of recordings of the professional performances of ‘The Beatles’. Andrew continues to advise Sony/ATV Music Publishing and a number of other major music publishing companies on a broad range of matters.

    Alongside his contentious music practice, Andrew has advised a number of high profile sporting personalities including the former world champion boxers Lennox Lewis and Joe Calzaghe.

    Andrew Forbes

  • Dominic Free

    Dominic Free

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7556

    Dominic is a partner in the firm’s Dispute Resolution Group.

    Before joining Lee & Thompson in 2016, Dominic was a partner at Forbes Anderson Free, a highly respected boutique practice specialising in litigation, arbitration and dispute resolution for clients in the media and entertainment industries. Prior to that, he was a litigation partner at media firm The Simkins Partnership (now Michael Simkins).  Dominic qualified at Richards Butler (now Reed Smith).

    Highly regarded for his copyright and industry contracts litigation expertise, Dominic has a substantial following of music industry clients including the major record companies Universal and Warners, music publishers, the music industry collecting society PRS for Music,high profile artists and managers.

    The legal directory ‘Chambers and Partners’ recognises Dominic as a Band 1 practitioner in contentious music matters and notes that he is considered by sources to be "very thorough, with an eye for detail and very good strategic insights."

    Alongside his music industry practice, Dominic advises book publishers including, Macmillan, and the Publishers Association. He has also acted for clients in the film and television industries.

    Dominic Free

  • Jeremy Gawade

    Jeremy Gawade

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Jeremy is a partner with over 25 years experience in the film and television sectors. Jeremy worked in industry, firstly as a partner in an international film and television distribution company and then as a consultant for various film and production companies, before bringing his diverse film and television experience to Lee & Thompson in 1990 when he founded the firm's Film and Television Groups.

    Jeremy has particular expertise in putting together finance, distribution and production/co-production deals for film and television projects. Jeremy increasingly acts for talent based production companies allowing actors, writers and directors a greater degree of ownership and control over their work He is also uniquely qualified to help clients finance, produce and exploit concert and event specials and other music based film and television programming.

    The new UK edition of Chambers and Partners ranks Jeremy as a leader in his field.

    Jeremy Gawade

  • Kieran Jay

    Kieran Jay

    Partner

    Telephone+44(0)20 3073 7627

    Kieran joined Lee & Thompson in May 2011 as a Partner.

    He has developed a significant and ever-growing artist-orientated music practice representing leading artists, song-writers, producers and mixers as well as independent management, record and publishing companies.  Advising on recording, publishing, management, live performance and endorsement agreements, Kieran counts some of the UK's most successful artists – both new and established – as clients, including Lily Allen, Paolo Nutini, Jess Glynne, Example and FKA Twigs. 

    Kieran also has significant experience in Sports Law having spent a number of years as a Partner at Herbert Reeves & Co working with Michael Kennedy advising leading Premiership footballers and managers, athletes and agents on playing contracts, image rights arrangements and endorsements, broadcast arrangements, regulatory and disciplinary issues.

    Kieran Jay

  • Robert Lee

    Robert Lee

    Consultant

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Robert Lee co-founded Lee & Thompson in 1983. Since he qualified in 1972 he has been pre-eminent in his chosen field. The opening lyrics of Roxy Music's 1972 debut single "Virginia Plain" are "Make me a deal and make it straight, all signed and sealed I'll take it, to Robert Lee I'll show it…"

    Earlier in his career, Robert acted for many of the large independent record companies which have now been acquired by the majors including A&M Records, Virgin Records, Anchor Records, Island Records and Tamla Motown. He now acts for a number of high profile recording artists.

    Robert is frequently instructed as an expert witness in music industry disputes. In addition, Robert has developed an expertise in relation to book publishing deals. He also acts for an increasing number of music business executives in relation to their employment arrangements.

    Robert also regularly lectures on music publishing and related matters.

    The new UK edition of Chambers and Partners ranks Robert as a Senior Statesman and leader in his field.

    Robert Lee

  • Richard Lever

    Richard Lever

    Head of Television

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Richard is a partner and heads Lee & Thompson's Television Group, advising a diverse and extensive television client list which includes most of the UK's leading television production companies. He advises on all areas of the television industry, including the creation of talent based TV production companies.

    Richard was actively involved with PACT, having served on the PACT Council for a number of years and was extensively involved in policy making affecting producers across the television industry. In particular, Richard advised PACT's TV policy group advising on the Terms of Trade for UK broadcasters which has provided significant opportunities for UK 'indies'.

    Richard is recognised as one of the leading TV specialists in the UK and internationally. The new UK edition of Chambers and Partners ranks Richard as a leader in his field.

    Richard Lever

  • Christos Michaels

    Christos Michaels

    Head of Film

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7669

    Christos is a partner and heads Lee & Thompson's Film Group. He trained at magic circle city law firm Linklaters and then specialised there in international project finance before joining Harbottle & Lewis. Focusing on television and film, he was part of the Entertainment Law Team of the Year 1999 (as voted by Legal Business) and was also seconded to head up business affairs for the 10 television production companies at Chrysalis Visual Entertainment.

    In 2000 Christos joined Mel Gibson's Icon UK Group as Head of Business Affairs overseeing development, finance, production, sales agency and distribution in the UK and internationally. He was also in charge of all business affairs for Icon Distribution in Australia. Christos worked on an extensive range of UK, US and international films with budgets ranging from micro to blockbuster including the Icon-produced "What Women Want", "The Passion" and "Apocalypto". He is one of the only private practice lawyers in the UK to have had this in-house experience at a leading US and UK vertically integrated independent film company.

    Christos joined Lee & Thompson in March 2006. Using his unique experience, Christos heads up the Film Group's representation of leading distributors and sales agents. Christos also represents a range of new and established producers and financiers in the film and television industries.

    Christos specialises in structuring the finance and production for independent films and helping implement exploitation models for sales agents and distributors of new and established media.

    Christos speaks at industry events and seminars in the UK and internationally. He also sits on the Media and Marketing Committee of the Medicinema charity.

    The latest editions of legal directories Chambers & Partners and Legal 500 both rank Christos as a leader in his field describing him as  "very accomplished and very commercial" ;"extremely hard-working but also really approachable" (Chambers & Partners) and "a brilliant thinker" who is "tenacious, attentive and very well connected in the industry" (Legal 500).

    Christos Michaels

  • Malcolm Murray

    Malcolm Murray

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Malcolm is a partner and heads up Lee & Thompson's Corporate & Commercial Group.

    He has many years' experience advising on company, corporate, corporate finance and general commercial deals for a range of clients principally within the creative industries, including those in music, TV, sport, fashion, live events and exhibitions, marketing & communications, brands, digital, publishing, film and theatre.

    He advises on all types of corporate deals including structuring start ups, mergers and acquisitions, joint venture arrangements, private equity investments, shareholder agreements, management buy ins and outs and complex earn-out structures.

    The new UK edition of Legal 500 recommends Malcolm for Media Corporate work.

    Notable recent deals that Malcolm has advised on include:-

    • Sony Music on its acquisition of Essential Music
    • Lionsgate UK on its investment in Primal Media and Potboiler TV
    • BMG Rights Management on its acquisitions of RAM Records and the Pete Waterman catalogues
    • World Productions on its sale to ITV
    • Nicola Shindler on the sale of Red Production Company to Studiocanal
    • David Beckham and DB Ventures in relation to a new joint venture, Seven Global (the vehicle which manages David's commercial rights) with Global Brands Group
    • various on and off screen creative TV talent on their umbrella arrangements with "Super Indies" including, Matt Lucas (All3Media), Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones (Endemol), Benedict Cumberbatch (Studiocanal) Andy Davenport (Shine), Tony Wood (Cineflix), Derek Wax (Endemol), Route 24 (ITV Studios) Eleven Film (C4 Growth Fund), Simon Crawford-Collins (BBCW) and Corona (Fremantle)
    • Premiership Rugby, administrator of the Aviva Premiership, on its company structure and constitution and on its sponsorship portfolio including the title rights agreement with Aviva
    • Blue Raincoat on its acquisition of Chrysalis Records from Warner Music
    • 1966 Entertainment on its management of the commercial interests of the England national football squad including the landmark agreement with the FA regulating the use of the commercial rights in Team England
    • Merlin and Atlantis producer Urban Myth on the sale of a stake in that company to Studiocanal
    • Steve Winwood on the sale of his music publishing company to Kobalt
    • "The Fall" producer, Artists Studio on its sale to Endemol
    • Ignite experiential agency on its sale to Wasserman Media Group
    • SME London on its licence to run Countryfile Live from BBCW
    • the MBO of Upper Street Events (acting for selling shareholders and ongoing management)
    • ad agency 180 Holdings BV on its sale to Omnicom, the London partners of Fallon on its sale to Publicis and the London partners of Anomaly on their deal with Anomaly in New York
    • ArtHK, the largest art fair in Asia on its sale to MCH Messe Basel, Peter Jones and Phil Soar on the sale of "Counter Terror Expo" to Clarion, John Bednall on the sale of Legend to Reed and Upper Street Events and Angus Montgomery on various event acquisitions
    • Spirit Music on its acquisition of the Mark Bolan and T Rex post-1971 catalogue
    • the MBO of Icon Film Distribution (acting for management)
    • Argonon on its acquisition of Windfall Films and of Transparent Television
    • digital marketing agency Squeeze on its sale to DonerCardwell Hawkins, ChannelFlip Media on its sale to Shine and youth trend agency Rough Hill on its sale to Chime Communications

    Malcolm has a post graduate certificate in Sports Law from Kings College, London.

    Malcolm Murray

  • Nicki Parfitt

    Nicki Parfitt

    Partner

    Telephone+44(0)20 3073 7600

    Nicki trained at the city firm Denton Hall and, after qualifying in 1993, spent two years in their media department specialising in publishing and libel law and also acting for a number of film and television production and distribution companies.

    In 1996, Nicki joined Pearson Television and became Head of Legal and Business Affairs for Pearson Television Productions in continental Europe and Latin America.

    In 1998, Nicki joined Portman Entertainment Group (now Digital Rights Group) as Head of Legal and Business Affairs and was appointed a Board Director. During this time Portman established itself as a prominent packager, executive producer and sales agent of international feature films and television drama programming and Nicki developed an expertise in the financing, production and distribution of high profile UK and international productions and co-productions.

    Nicki joined Lee & Thompson as a partner in April 2001. In 2006 she left to pursue another role in the film sales sector and returned to the firm as a partner in 2011. She represents a number of financiers, sales agents, distributors and production companies and also has expertise in structuring EIS investment for film. She also has extensive industry contacts and is widely admired for her legal and commercial skills.

    The new UK edition of Chambers & Partners ranks Nicki as a leader in her field.

    Nicki Parfitt

  • Oli Shipton

    Oli Shipton

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Oli is a Partner and a member of the firm's Corporate & Commercial Group.  Oli also heads up the firm's Sports Group.

    His practice focuses on advising businesses in the wider creative industries across the full spectrum of their corporate and commercial requirements. This will regularly involve advice in relation to seeking and concluding seed and Series A investments, shareholder arrangements, day-to-day contractual affairs, joint ventures, acquisitions and disposals.

    Having previously spent time at a start-up and eventually exiting with the initial management team, Oli understands first-hand the legal services that creative businesses need at every stage of their life cycle. After re-joining Lee & Thompson as a Partner in 2015 (he was an Associate at the firm between 2009-2012), his clients now include investment funds, companies and individuals involved in fin-tech, media-tech, advertising, fashion, social media, music, talent management and sports marketing as well as owners of valuable intellectual property rights.

    Oli also has particular expertise advising clients in the sports sector. Primarily, he represents sports agents, high profile footballers (past and present) and managers on their playing contracts, representation agreements and endorsements. Oli has represented 1966 Entertainment Limited (including a spell as its General Counsel) in relation to the management of the commercial rights of the England Men's Football Team and was responsible for negotiating the landmark framework agreement with the Football Association in 2012.

    Other notable deals that Oli has advised on include:-

    • Gareth Southgate on his appointment as the manager of the England Football Team
    • Sony Music on its acquisition of Essential Music
    • Blue Raincoat on its acquisition of Chrysalis Records from Warner Music
    • David Beckham and DB Ventures in relation to a new joint venture, Seven Global (the vehicle which manages David's commercial rights) with Global Brands Group
    • Iconic Images Limited on its acquisition and representation of the photographic archives of celebrated photographers including Terry O'Neill, Douglas Kirkland, Ted Williams and Rolling Stone Magazine's Baron Wolman
    • Various on and off screen creative TV talent on their umbrella arrangements with "Super Indies" including, Matt Lucas (All3Media), Benedict Cumberbatch (StudioCanal) and Derek Wax (Endemol Shine Group).
    • ArtHK, the largest art fair in Asia on its sale to MCH Messe Basel
    • ChannelFlip Media on its sale to Shine; and
    • Youth trend agency Rough Hill on its sale to Chime Communications

    Oli Shipton

  • Mark Stafford

    Mark Stafford

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Mark is a partner in the firm's Dispute Resolution, Brand Protection and Digital Groups. He joined Lee & Thompson in 2006 and handles all types of contentious work across the media and entertainment industries, for both individual talent and corporate clients.

    Mark advises on the full spectrum of music industry disputes, from copyright infringement matters to breach of contract claims, acting for artists, labels, publishers, management companies and agents, and has been involved in a number of high profile Court actions. He was instructed by the Wailers in their well-publicised litigation against Island Records and has recently acted for Lily Allen in High Court proceedings.

    Mark represents a number of talent clients, from mainstream heavyweights such as One Direction, Tom Jones, and Queen, through to more niche artists, such as FKA Twigs, Stormzy and Joey Negro. He has a wide breadth of knowledge across all musical genres with his experience as both a DJ and promoter lending him a specific expertise in the dance and urban music sectors.

    Mark also represents a number of film and television clients, advising producers, distributors, financiers and agents on all types of contentious issues, as well as advising talent clients, such as Stephen Fry, Bill Bailey and Matt Lucas, on brand protection matters. Mark has a particularly strong reputation for pre-broadcast copyright and libel clearance work, which he regularly undertakes for the producers of high-profile feature films and television series. Recent highlights include 'American Honey', 'The Man From Mo'Wax', 'Marcella' and 'Saddam Goes To Hollywood'.

    An increasing part of Mark's practice is his privacy and defamation work, in which he has represented a number of celebrities and corporate clients in disputes with print publications and online media platforms.

    A member of the firm's dedicated Digital Group, Mark also provides advice on disputes arising from internet activity, including online infringement, digital piracy and social media issues. He also advises on brand protection issues, including digital asset protection, trade mark registration and domain name acquisition.

    Clients commend Mark for "always being the right mix of creative and pragmatic" (Legal 500)

    Mark Stafford

  • Lee Stone

    Lee Stone

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7681

    Lee is a partner in Lee & Thompson's Film Group.

    Upon qualifying at SNR Denton (then Denton Hall) in 1998, Lee worked at Endemol UK, where he gained valuable television industry experience with a particular emphasis on children's drama, live event programming and reality/factual entertainment television.

    Lee joined Lee & Thompson in 2000 and now advises on all aspects of the film and television industry, representing a range of financiers, producers, distributors and post-production houses. His clients include some of the UK's most successful and prolific film production companies.

    Lee is also a leading lawyer in the field of animation and has structured and has worked on a multitude of international animation co-productions. In addition, Lee has also been instrumental in developing the firm's expertise in advising the Indian film industry and is widely recognised as the go-to-lawyer for Indian film producers, financiers and distributors wanting to do business in the UK, as a result of which Lee is also regularly instructed by British companies wanting to collaborate with entities from within the Indian film industry.

    Lee Stone

  • Sam Tatton-Brown

    Sam Tatton-Brown

    Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7675

    Sam is a partner in Lee & Thompson's Film & TV Group.

    He joined the firm in 2013 from Davenport Lyons where he was one of the principal partners in the Film & TV Group. Sam's practice covers all areas of film, television and other audio-visual rights, production, finance and exploitation with a particular emphasis on film and TV finance. Sam has been consistently ranked as a 'leading individual' for this sector in the major legal directories.

    After completing his training at Frere Cholmeley Bischoff, Sam gained experience in Clifford Chance's Debt Capital Markets Group before joining Davenport Lyons in 1999.

    Sam has represented many of the UK based banks active in film and television financing and is recognised as a major player in this field. Examples of his work include acting as one of the principal advisers to RBS on over 80 productions that it financed between 2000 and 2006; advising Barclays Bank in relation to award winning TV series 'Parades End' for HBO and BBC; acting for Alliance & Leicester in relation to 'Casino Royale'; advising Piccadilly Pictures in relation to investment in films such as 'Corialanus', 'We Need to Talk About Kevin', 'Hunky Dory' and 'Numbers Station'. Sam was also responsible for devising the documentation that has now become industry standard for banks to discount BBC and C4 commissions from independent producers.

    Sam is a regular speaker at industry events and conferences.

    Sam Tatton-Brown

  • Andrew Thompson

    Andrew Thompson

    Senior Partner

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7622

    Andrew is one of the Lee & Thompson's founding partners and today is the firm's Senior Partner.

    Since he qualified as a solicitor in 1978, his work has always focused on media and entertainment. In the early years of his career he worked principally for independent record companies. In particular, he worked closely with Chrysalis Records until the label was acquired by EMI in 1992. Andrew became one of the "standout" figures in the music business and has acted for world renowned acts over the years including Depeche Mode, Simply Red, Sir Tom Jones, Wet Wet Wet, Richard Ashcroft, the Spice Girls and Karl Jenkins. His modest manner and straight forward, commercial advice has placed him at the heart of the industry and in 2003 Andrew (and Robert Lee) were inducted into the prestigious MMF Roll of Honour and were recipients of the MMF Founders Award.

    Andrew's main focus is now on talent representation. He acts for leading composers, for a host of major recording artists and for songwriters, producers and managers. He also acts for writers and for various sports and other "personalities" including David and Victoria Beckham.

    Andrew played a significant role in the creation in 1987 of the Music Managers' Forum which exists as a lobbying organisation to further the interests of music business managers and the artists they represent. Since the MMF's inception Lee & Thompson has provided legal advice on a pro bono basis and Andrew is a major contributor to The Music Management Bible published by SMT for the MMF.

    The latest edition of Chambers & Partners ranks Andrew as a Band 1 leader in his field. Andrew is also a trained mediator.

    Andrew Thompson

  • Julian Ward

    Julian Ward

    Partner

    Telephone+44(0)20 3073 7655

    Julian is a digital media, IP and technology lawyer with over 17 years' experience working across the creative industries advising clients on all matters relating to digital content, interactive entertainment and digital publishing.

    Julian provides specialist advice across multi-media platforms and all forms of media content with a particular focus on the development and publication of videogames, software applications and websites;  all elements relating to the licensing and distribution of online content; e-commerce and digital retail; online platforms, distribution and broadcasting (DTO, VOD, OTT); the technology architecture underpinning digital platforms; online advertising and marketing (including online partnerships, co-branding and affiliate deals);  rights management and clearance, personality rights, e-sports, betting and gambling compliance; social media publishing, the monetisation of digital content and all areas of data protection, privacy and cyber-security. 

    Before joining Lee & Thompson in May 2017, Julian was Head of Digital Media at Hamlins having previously spent over a decade as in-house counsel to leading media and technology companies, including BBC World Wide as Head of Business & Legal Affairs for Digital Retail and Games, and leading video games developer and publisher Codemasters as Head of Legal.

    Known for his in-depth industry insight and commercial approach, Julian prides himself on his open and collaborative way of working.  He is particularly skilled at working with businesses to craft and deliver commercial and novel business models and strategies – particularly where digital aspects converge and disrupt the status quo.   

    Julian is regularly asked to speak at events, chair panels and offer comment on digital innovation and development within the creative industries.

     

     

    Julian Ward

  • Gordon Williams

    Gordon Williams

    Head of Brand Protection

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Gordon is head of the firm's Brand Protection Group, having joined the firm as a Partner in 1997 to lead its contentious practice. Representing both individual and corporate clients, he has specialised in the litigation and resolution of entertainment industry disputes throughout his career since his qualification in 1989, and is ranked as a leader in his field in the UK edition of Chambers and Partners Guide to the Legal Profession.

    Gordon has unique experience of dealing with disputes involving high profile entertainers, from musicians and sports personalities to actors and celebrities. One Direction, David Beckham, Victoria Beckham, the Spice Girls, Sir Tom Jones, Robert Plant, the Jimi Hendrix Estate and The Rolling Stones are among the household names he has acted for, while corporate clients have included EMI, Sony and Universal.

    Under his direction, the firm has established itself as one of the UK's leaders for contentious entertainment work with a reputation for providing a quality "one-stop" service covering all types of dispute, whether they involve contractual rights, intellectual property rights or a client's image, brand or reputation.

    Recognising its growing importance as a practice area, Gordon also set up the firm's dedicated Brand Protection Group through which he leads the brand management programmes for a broad range of clients across the areas of music, film, television and sport, including David Beckham and One Direction.

    Gordon is also the founding Chairman of the Trustees of The Midi Music Company, a charity which provides music tuition and creative careers advice to young people in deprived areas of South East London (www.themidimusiccompany.co.uk).

    Gordon Williams

Associates

  • Anna Bowsher

    Anna Bowsher

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (020) 3073 7658

    Anna read Archaeology & Anthropology at the University of Bristol before completing her LLB at the College of Law in London. After completing her training contract at Lee & Thompson, Anna qualified into the Film & TV department in March 2017, and currently assists the team in advising leading independent producers on all aspects of film and TV development, financing, production and distribution. 

    Anna Bowsher

  • Wayne Codogan

    Wayne Codogan

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (020) 3073 7590

    Wayne is an Associate in the firm's Film & Television Group.

    He studied Law at Queen Mary, before completing the Legal Practice Course at City Law School where he graduated with the highest overall Distinction in his year group. Following his studies he completed a 12-month legal internship at Warner Bros. Entertainment UK. His subsequent training contract at Marriott Harrison LLP included six months in their Media, Technology and IP department.

    Wayne joined Lee & Thompson on qualifying in 2016 and assists on all matters related to the development, production, financing and distribution of television productions.

    Wayne Codogan

  • Frania Cooper

    Frania Cooper

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7560

    Frania is an Associate in the firm’s Dispute Resolution Group. She graduated from Oxford with a degree in English before converting to Law. Having trained at City firm K&L Gates LLP, where she qualified in 2012, Frania joined Lee & Thompson in 2016. Prior to this, Frania practiced at highly respected media and entertainment litigation boutique, Forbes Anderson Free. 

    Frania advises clients in the publishing, sports, technology, music, film and TV industries on a broad range of IP and contractual disputes. She has a particular interest in online issues and has gained considerable experience advising rights owners and online platforms on copyright infringement, brand protection and defamation matters.

    She also undertakes non-contentious work for marketing and advertising clients, including advising on contract negotiations and campaigns for high-profile brands.

    Frania Cooper

  • Leo Dawkins

    Leo Dawkins

    Senior Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Leo is a Senior Associate in Lee & Thompson's Dispute Resolution and Reputation Protection Groups.  He studied music at university before converting to law and trained at media firm Carter-Ruck.

    Described as "brilliant" by Legal 500, Leo has considerable experience in all types of media litigation and dispute resolution, including defamation, privacy, harassment, data protection and intellectual property matters. He regularly provides advice to individuals and companies in pre and post publication disputes with newspapers and broadcasters and has also acted for dozens of phone hacking victims in claims against Mirror Group and News Group Newspapers, netting over £3 million in damages for his clients. In film and television, Leo regularly provides pre-publication clearance advice to production companies and other publishers.

    Leo also has a varied commercial practice, advising clients in relation to other disputes within the media and entertainment industries, including those involving breach of contract, intellectual property and insolvency issues.

    Leo Dawkins

  • Annabelle Ducros

    Annabelle Ducros

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Annabelle joined the firm in April 2014 from Sydney, Australia where she worked at one of Australia's top entertainment, communications & media firms, Tress Cox Lawyers. She has significant experience advising clients across the creative industries in both contentious and non-contentious matters.

    A joint French/Australian national, Annabelle spent the formative years of her career in Paris qualifying into the IT, Commercial and Litigation team of Bird & Bird before moving to Australia where she developed a particular strength in film and television financing work. She worked closely with Aver-Bank of Montreal (BMO) and Fulcrum Media Finance advising on all legal issues in relation to the financing of many Australian productions and international co-productions with the UK, Germany and France.

    At Lee & Thompson, Annabelle works in the Film & TV Group advising financiers and producers in connection with the development, financing and production of film and television projects.

    Annabelle Ducros

  • Carrie Finlay

    Carrie Finlay

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (020) 3073 7672

    Carrie is an Associate in the firm's Film & Television Group and assists on all matters related to the development, production, financing and distribution of television productions.

    A joint British/Canadian national, Carrie qualified to practice law in both New York (2013) and Quebec (2012) after obtaining degrees in Civil Law and Common Law, as well as a Bachelor of Commerce from McGill University in Montreal.

    Prior to joining Lee & Thompson in August 2016, Carrie served as Director, Business & Legal Affairs at one of Canada's most prominent independent production companies, Muse Entertainment. She also has first-hand experience in the industry, having worked as professional voice actress for over 20 years.

    Carrie Finlay

  • Noorjhan Flanagan

    Noorjhan Flanagan

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7629

    Noorjhan qualified as a solicitor in 2010 and with a desire to combine her longstanding passion for music and law, she has developed a specialism in the music and entertainment industries. 

    Before joining Lee & Thompson in April 2015, Noorjhan worked as an in-house lawyer for Universal Music where she became Head of Legal and Business Affairs across the Decca Records and Decca Classics labels. She has invaluable commercial knowledge and expertise in dealing with a broad range of artists and musical genres including indie, pop, jazz, dance, hip hop, beat boxing and classical. She has experience working with both new emerging talent and established high profile artists. 

    A member of Lee & Thompson's thriving Music Group, Noorjhan currently assists in advising clients on a variety of matters across the music industry including recording artists, writers, composers, managers, producers, mixers, record labels, publishers and digital content owners.   

    Noorjhan Flanagan

  • Tim Fowler

    Tim Fowler

    Senior Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Tim is a lawyer in the firm's Music Group.

    Tim has specialised in music and entertainment law since qualifying as a solicitor in 2006. After training in the city at Baker & McKenzie, Tim commenced his music industry practice at Russells, where he primarily acted for businesses operating within the music industry, including major and independent record labels, publishing companies, production houses and management companies. Tim moved to Harbottle & Lewis in 2010, where his practice broadened to include a greater number of clients from the talent side of the industry. Whilst at Harbottle & Lewis, Tim undertook a secondment to a multinational company, assisting on the content acquisition side of their business.

    Tim joined Lee & Thompson in 2013 and has since seen a further shift towards representing musical talent, including producers, writers and recording artists. As a Senior Associate in the Music Group, Tim enjoys working both with companies and individuals who have had a longstanding involvement with the industry, and also with new and emerging talent who are at the outset of their careers. He regularly advises his clients on, and negotiates and drafts, core music industry contracts including recording, publishing, management, production and live performance agreements, as well as contracts pertaining to his clients' ancillary rights, including merchandise, branding and sponsorship.

    Tim regularly attends numerous industry events, including MIDEM, SXSW and The Great Escape and is a frequent panellist at Music Managers Forum events.

    Tim Fowler

  • Marek George

    Marek George

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7679

    After completing an undergraduate degree in Law followed by a Masters in Media Law, both at Kings College London, Marek undertook his Legal Practice Course at BPP Law School. His subsequent training contract at Wiggin LLP included a six-month secondment to the British Recorded Music Industry.

    Marek joined Lee and Thompson upon qualification in September 2013 and works in the firm's Film & TV Group, assisting the team in advising leading independent producers on the development, financing and production of their projects.

    Marek George

  • Simon Goodbody

    Simon Goodbody

    Senior Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7559

    Simon is a Senior Associate in the firm's Dispute Resolution Group.

    Prior to joining Lee & Thompson in 2016, Simon spent seven years at Forbes Anderson Free, a highly respected boutique practice specialising in litigation, arbitration and dispute resolution for clients in the media and entertainment industries.

    Simon has developed a specialised knowledge of music industry disputes. He acts for a number of successful artists, record labels, publishing companies, collecting societies and industry bodies.  Most recently Simon has acted for British Phonographic Industry (BPI) in seeking blocking injunctions to prevent access to various peer-to-peer file sharing websites; advised two major record labels in a dispute with a multinational company arising out of the launch of a new online digital media distribution platform; acted for a successful rock band in a long running dispute with a leaving member.

    In addition to music industry disputes, Simon advises clients in other media sectors on a broad range of contentious contractual and intellectual property matters. Cases of particular note include advising a client in relation to a shareholder dispute between founding members of a film production company and acting for the Defendants in FAPL v QC Leisure, a case that was referred to the European Court of Justice and concerned the use of foreign satellite decoder cards in the UK to show English Premier League football matches.

    Simon Goodbody

  • Efrat Gordon

    Efrat Gordon

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (020) 3073 7598

    Efrat is an Associate in the firm's Employment Group.

    Efrat studied Biomedical Chemistry at the University of Warwick. She is fluent in Hebrew and spent a year working abroad prior to converting to law.

    Efrat trained and worked as an Associate at a leading boutique firm in the West End where she often dealt with multi-jurisdictional employment matters across a variety of sectors, including the media industry.

    Efrat joined Lee & Thompson in 2016 and assists on all types of employment matters including:-

    • Drafting employment agreements, consultancy agreements, compromise agreements, company procedures and company handbooks;
    • General employment advice including in relation to recruitment, disciplinary issues, performance management issues, grievances, redundancies, dismissals and terminations;
    • Employment claims including claims for breach of contract, discrimination, harassment, and victimisation;
    • Restructuring and TUPE transfers.

     

    Efrat firmly believes in a personal and dependable approach, resulting in her involvement in every step of each matter from inception to conclusion.

    Efrat Gordon

  • Lale Kemal

    Lale Kemal

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (020) 3073 7600

    Lale is a solicitor in the firm's Music Group.

    Lale trained and worked as an associate in the Intellectual Property litigation team at Norton Rose Fulbright for 5 years. Following this, she worked in-house gaining further intellectual property and commercial music experience at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and the British Recorded Music Industry (BPI) respectively, including in relation to the BRIT Awards 2016. As a result, Lale has experience working with a diverse range of clients, from artists and designers to larger corporates and technology companies.

    Lale has achieved a BA in Historical Studies at Bristol University, an MA in History of International Relations at the London School of Economics and a Post Graduate Diploma in Intellectual Property Law & Practice at the University of Oxford.

    In 2016 Lale joined Lee & Thompson's Music Group where she advises clients across the music industry, including record labels, publishers, managers, producers, writers and recording artists.

    Lale Kemal

  • Lyall Mabin

    Lyall Mabin

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (020) 3073 7686

    Lyall is an Associate in the firm's Film & Television Group.

    He completed a Bachelor of Arts in film at the South African School of Motion Picture Medium and Live Performance and subsequently an LLB (Honours) at the University of Auckland. Lyall was later admitted to the Supreme Court of Victoria and the High Court of Australia in 2014 and most recently specialised in project finance at top tier Australian law firm, Gilbert + Tobin.

    Lyall joined Lee & Thompson in 2017 and assists on all matters related to the development, financing, distribution and production of film and TV projects, with a particular focus on financing.

    Lyall Mabin

  • Joshua Metliss

    Joshua Metliss

    Senior Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Joshua trained as a solicitor in the City before continuing his career at a West End media practice. He joined Lee & Thompson from sports, fashion and outdoor brands owner Pentland Brands plc where he was a member of their in-house legal team.

    Joshua is a member of the firm's Corporate & Commercial Group and advises businesses and individuals on corporate and commercial matters, including structuring start-ups, joint ventures, shareholder/partnership agreements, share options, debt and equity (including venture capital and private equity) investments, mergers, acquisitions, disposals, MBOs and commercial contracts including sponsorship, endorsement, licensing and talent agreements. Joshua's practice is focused in particular on the creative and entertainment industries including live events and exhibitions, digital media and marcomms and sport as well as music, film and TV. Joshua also advises investors and businesses in the restaurant industry.

    Joshua Metliss

  • Zoe Morris

    Zoe Morris

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Zoe is an Associate in the firm's Dispute Resolution and Reputation Protection Groups.

    After graduating from the University of Warwick with a degree in Law, Zoe trained at DLA Piper. During her training contract she completed a six-month secondment to DLA Piper's Tokyo office before qualifying into the firm's Litigation and Regulatory Group in 2011.

    Zoe then joined media litigation firm Carter-Ruck where she practised for over two and a half years before joining Lee & Thompson in 2015.

    Zoe has considerable litigation and dispute resolution experience. Whilst at Carter-Ruck, she acted on a wide range of defamation and privacy matters on behalf of well-known celebrities, politicians and companies. Zoe represented several claimants with phone hacking claims against News Group Newspapers in connection with Operation Weeting, with each claimant obtaining substantial sums in damages. Other successes include obtaining substantial sums in damages and Statements in Open Court on behalf of libel claimants. She also has experience in advising individuals and companies pre-publication/broadcast.

     

    Zoe regularly advises clients in relation to other entertainment industry disputes, including commercial disputes and claims in respect of copyright infringement.

     

    Zoe Morris

  • Campbell Naylor

    Campbell Naylor

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (020) 3073 7649

    Campbell studied Law & Sociology at the University of Warwick, before training as a solicitor with city firm Linklaters. On qualification in 2014, Campbell joined Linklaters' capital markets practice, working on multi-jurisdictional financing matters for blue-chip corporates and major investment banks.

    In January 2017, Campbell joined Lee & Thompson as an Associate in the firm's Corporate & Commercial Group and assists on all types of corporate, commercial and sport matters.

    Campbell Naylor

  • Lizzie Payne-James

    Lizzie Payne-James

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7617

    Lizzie is a solicitor in Lee & Thompson's Music Group.

    Lizzie read Chinese Studies at the University of Cambridge. She lived in China as part of her course, doing translation work for the EU's Delegation in Beijing, and it was there that she developed her interest in law. After completing her LLB, she trained at the international law firm Hogan Lovells and was seconded to the firm’s Hong Kong office for six months before completing her training in the firm’s Intellectual Property department.

    Upon qualification she decided to combine her vocation of law with her passion for music. She then spent over two years at a specialist music law firm, SSB, where she gained considerable experience working with talent, advising clients on all aspects of their careers. She joined Lee & Thompson's thriving Music Group in June 2015 and represents a diverse range of clients from recording artists to rights companies across the full spectrum of music industry contracts.

    Lizzie Payne-James

  • Angela Scurrah

    Angela Scurrah

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7667

    Angela graduated from the University of Tasmania with a combined Arts Law Degree in 2006 and was later admitted to the Supreme Court of Tasmania and the High Court of Australia in 2007.

    In 2011, Angela joined the Film & TV Group at Lee & Thompson and worked as a paralegal until admission to the roll of solicitors in England and Wales in early 2013.

    Angela assists a variety of clients including leading independent producers, financiers and distributors in connection with the development, financing and production of film and television projects.

    Angela Scurrah

  • Lucy Strauss

    Lucy Strauss

    Senior Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Lucy began her career in the City at K&L Gates LLP before joining Lee & Thompson as an Associate in the firm's Corporate Group.

    Lucy advises on general corporate and commercial matters including structuring start-ups, cross-border mergers and acquisitions, joint venture arrangements and shareholder agreements and investments in the fields of media and entertainment, with a particular focus on the areas of sport, sponsorship, music, film & TV, advertising and marketing, and live events.

    Notable recent deals that Lucy has advised on include:

    • BMG Rights Management on its acquisition of RAM Records 
    • World Productions on its sale to ITV
    • Lionsgate UK on its investment in Primal Media
    • Sony Music on its acquisition of Essential Music & Marketing
    • SME London on its licence to run Countryfile Live from BBCW
    • Eleven Films on the investment in that company by the Channel 4 Growth Fund
    • Nicola Shindler on the sale of Red Production Company to Studiocanal
    • Ignite experiential agency on its sale to Wasserman Media Group
    • Argonon on its acquisition of Windfall Films and of Transparent Television
    • Various on and off screen creative TV talent on their umbrella arrangements with "Super Indies" including Matt Lucas (All3Media), Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones (Endemol), Derek Wax (Endemol), Corona TV (Fremantle) and Tony Wood (Cineflix)

    Lucy Strauss

  • Andrew Sturcke

    Andrew Sturcke

    Senior Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Andrew trained with the firm Marriott Harrison. Before joining Lee & Thompson in January 2006, he worked as an in-house solicitor at a leading literary agency.

    As a Senior Associate in the Television Group, Andrew advises several of the UK's leading independent production companies on the development, production and distribution of television programmes.

    Andrew specializes in drama, and has acted as production lawyer on some of the most high profile scripted programmes commissioned by the BBC (Spooks, Life on Mars, The Trip), ITV (Downton Abbey, Scott and Bailey), Channel 4 (This is England '86) and Sky (Trollied, Hit and Miss, various Little Cracker and Playhouse projects).

    Andrew also tutors on the legal aspects of production for The National Film and Television School, as part of the legal module of their Producer Training Course run by Lee & Thompson.

    Andrew Sturcke

  • Chris Sweeney

    Chris Sweeney

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7560

    Chris is an Associate in the firm's Dispute Resolution Group.

    He graduated from Sheffield University with a degree in History before converting to Law at BPP in London. Having trained at Teacher Stern, where he qualified in 2009, Chris joined Lee & Thompson in 2016. Prior to this, he gained invaluable litigation experience at Forbes Anderson Free and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher.

    Chris has advised individuals, corporates, sports people and their representatives on a wide range of entertainment and general commercial litigation matters, including professional negligence, defamation, intellectual property and privacy disputes. In relation to the music industry, he has successfully negotiated the recovery of disputed royalty payments and has advised clients regarding copyright and contractual disputes.  

    Chris has excellent High Court experience, including acting for a sovereign state in a 10-week Commercial Court trial.  He has also represented clients in the County Courts and the Court of Appeal.

    Chris Sweeney

  • Antony Swiatek

    Antony Swiatek

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7671

    Antony began his career in the film and television industries with Ingenious Media, working on film financing transactions, before joining Olswang and spending over two years as the firm's production liaison, a fee earning role assisting studios and independent producers with the development and production of feature films and television series.

    After completing a training contract, including a six-month secondment at Chorion dealing with merchandising, publishing and distribution of children's books and animated series, Antony joined Lee and Thompson on qualification in September 2011.

    Antony currently works in the Film and Television Groups, advising leading independent producers in connection with the development, financing and production of film and television projects.

    Antony Swiatek

  • Emma Teichmann

    Emma Teichmann

    Associate

    Telephone020 3073 7634

    Emma joined Lee & Thompson in 2017, and is an Associate in the firm's Litigation Group.

    Emma graduated from the University of Oxford with a degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics before converting to law. She trained at Hogan Lovells, qualifying into their IP department in 2013. In 2015, Emma left for the London Screenwriters' Festival, where she gained invaluable commercial experience as a producer and in-house lawyer, combining her passion for film and law.

    Emma advises individuals and corporate clients on  a wide range of contentious matters, including intellectual property, general commercial and defamation disputes. She has advised several household names in relation to potential infringements of their copyright, trademarks, domain names and passing off rights, and has worked with clients to combat instances of counterfeiting, including close coordination with government authorities such as Trading Standards and PIPCU.  Emma's practice also includes managing IP portfolios and providing strategic advice on the protection and exploitation of IP rights, including film clearances.

    Emma Teichmann

  • James Walker

    James Walker

    Associate

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7656

    James read International History at The London School of Economics  and then graduated from University College London with a Master of Laws degree specialising in international human rights. He trained at city firm Herbert Smith where he qualified into a corporate group.

    In 2011, James attended the National Film & Television School for two years where he was awarded the Cineworld scholarship and obtained an MA in Producing for Film and Television. He has written and produced various short films for which James has won several awards including a BAFTA in 2014.

    James later  joined the Film & TV Group at Lee & Thompson where he uses his legal experience as well as his film and television production knowledge to assist a wide range of film and television clients.

    James Walker

Trainees

  • Alex Hazeldean

    Alex Hazeldean

    Trainee

    Telephone+44 (0)20 3073 7600

    Alex read Law at the University of Leeds prior to completing the LPC at the University of Law, graduating in 2014.

    Alex joined Lee & Thompson's Family group as a paralegal in August 2014 and has assisted the group on a range of matters in the High Court and Central Family Court, including the reported case of FB v PS [2015] EWHC 2797 (Fam).  Alex began his training contract at the firm in March 2016 and is currently completing his second seat in the Film & TV group.

    Alex Hazeldean

  • Michael Lucas

    Michael Lucas

    Trainee

    Telephone+44 (020) 3073 7685

    Michael read Law at King's College London.

    Prior to joining Lee & Thompson as a paralegal in January 2015 he spent two years in the in-house legal team at commodity trading company Gazprom Marketing & Trading.

    Michael studied his LPC part-time at BPP Holborn and began his training contract upon completion in March 2017. He is currently undertaking his first seat in the Film & TV department.

    Michael Lucas

  • Brian McSharry

    Brian McSharry

    Trainee

    Telephone+44 (020) 3073 7645

    Brian studied Business and Law at University College Dublin before completing his LLM at Trinity College Dublin. 

    He then spent a year working in the in-house legal team at Discovery Communications, focusing on distribution agreements and general corporate matters for the Discovery and Eurosport portfolios in Northern Europe. 

    Brian joined Lee & Thompson as a paralegal in 2016 and began his training contract in March 2017. He is currently completing his first seat in the Corporate and Commercial department. 

    Brian McSharry