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John Genga has practiced business litigation in Los Angeles for over 35 years.
His peers consistently have named him a Southern California “Super Lawyer” since that award began in the early 2000s. The San Fernando Valley Business Journal also has honored him as one of the “Top 25 Lawyers in the Valley.”
Mr. Genga has represented the motion picture and television arms of Disney, Sony Pictures (Columbia and Tri-Star), Paramount and other major studios, “mini-majors” and production companies such as Miramax and Mandalay Pictures and other entertainment interests like Electronic Arts, Marvel Entertainment and Creative Artists Agency. His cases have involved ongoing issues with properties such as the James Bond franchise, Spider-Man, Big, Die Hard, Look Who’s Talking, America’s Most Wanted, The Last Emperor, Fantasy Island, Easy Rider, Hawaii Five-0, The Beverly Hillbillies, The Three Stooges, the Coca-Cola polar bear and music catalogues of CBS Songs, Frank Zappa and Heart. He also has acted for trade associations representing copyright and trade secret interests in Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc., et al. v. Grokster, Ltd., et al., 380 F.3d 1154 (9th Cir. 2004), rev’d, 545 U.S. 913 (2005) and DVD Copy Control Ass’n v. Bunner, 31 Cal.4th 864 (2003).
On the talent side, John represented Michael Jackson in the UK High Court against the company responsible for “Living with Michael Jackson,” the documentary hosted by Martin Bashir that ultimately led to Mr. Jackson’s prosecution and acquittal on child molestation charges. He also successfully defended Mariah Carey against a federal copyright infringement action, pursued for Neil Diamond a copyright claim in France that resulted in a perpetual royalty with no lawsuit ever getting filed, and defended and resolved for Quincy Jones an entertainment merchandising case.
Genga also helped create new law protecting celebrity name, image and likeness. In a landmark case, he represented pop-culture icon Vanna White in one of the leading “right of publicity” cases taught in law schools throughout the country, White v. Samsung Electronics America, Inc., et al., 971 F.2d 1395 (9th Cir. 1992), cert. denied, 545 U.S. 913 (1993).
John began as a litigation associate at the international law firm Jones Day, spent twelve years as an associate and then partner at Hill Wynne Troop & Meisinger (the then-leading entertainment firm in Los Angeles), and four years as a partner and co-chair of the international entertainment practice at Paul Hastings before forming Genga & Associates in 2004.
He has written dozens of articles and spoken at many bar association and industry programs on entertainment, copyright and other intellectual property and business litigation topics.
Mr. Genga is a member of the American, California and Los Angeles County Bar Associations and the litigation, intellectual property and entertainment sections of each. He is admitted to practice law in California, all of its state courts and federal district courts, the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Ninth and Tenth Circuits, and the United States Supreme Court.
John graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature from Stanford University and with a J.D. from Michigan Law School. He has always operated his firm in Sherman Oaks and Encino in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles, and lives down the street in Tarzana with his wife (an entrepreneur, children’s book author and World Series of Poker hopeful), two kids (when they come home from college) and always at least one dog and cat.