Douglas L. Johnson
Douglas L. Johnson, Partner at Johnson & Johnson, LLP
Douglas L. Johnson is a Partner at Johnson & Johnson LLP. Mr. Johnson is well known for handling numerous high profile and wide-reaching entertainment matters. Mr. Johnson received his B.A. from the University of Southern California (1996) (Dean’s List) and his J.D. from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law (2000) (Dean’s List).
Mr. Johnson was named Super Lawyer for intellectual property litigation for eight consecutive years in 2006 to 2013 and again in 2016 & 2017. The Super Lawyer Attorneys represent the Top 2.5% of their profession in Southern California.
Many of Mr. Johnson’s clients are producers, actors, directors, production companies, music artists and record labels. He is well-known for his successes in profit participation disputes, theft of idea cases for TV and movies, and he continues to litigate music royalty cases.
- Mr. Johnson specializes in right of publicity cases and represents celebrities, models and professional athletes. Mr. Johnson regularly speaks on the subject and litigates numerous cases in this area each year. In 2016, Mr. Johnson tried a right of publicity case for an actor and obtained a seven-figure jury award.
Defended blues icon B.B. King in a claim seeking declaratory relief about the right to make a movie involving his life resulting in Plaintiff dismissing suit.
- Represented Glen Larson (the creator of Magnum PI, Knight Rider, Fall Guy, Battlestar Galactica) in a large-scale profit participation dispute against Universal.
- Mr. Johnson also represented Ed Weinberger in a profit participation dispute over the TV show Amen. He represented Richard Dreyfuss in several disputes over profit participation and he currently represents the producer of Turner and Hooch in litigation over profit participation.
- Mr. Johnson represented Jack Klugman (Quincy, Odd Couple) in a profit participation dispute against Universal. He also handled net profit disputes for both the creator and star of the TV show Mannix.
Currently representing Sylvester Stallone in litigation against Warner Brothers over profit participation on the movie Demolition Man.
- Mr. Johnson handled a theft-of-idea claim against A&E and Steven Segal over the TV show, Lawman. He also represented the Estate of Charles Bronson over back-end profits on several movies.
- Co-counsel in class actions against the five major Hollywood studios alleging endemic underpayment on home video and new digital media for pre-1982 movies for writers, producer, actors and directors. In those cases, Mr. Johnson handled the settlement with Universal for $25 million, the settlement with Fox for $12.6 million, and the settlements with Sony and Paramount.
- Co-counsel in three recently settled class actions against record industry companies over digital download royalties regarding years of underpayments to artists (Temptations/Motels/Ronee Blakely). The cases dealt head-on with unresolved points of law as to classification of digital downloads, and the rights of artists to receive royalties in the face of changing technology. Mr. Johnson handled the settlement with Universal for $11.5 million.
- Represented artist and record company in a copyright infringement case resulting in a seven-figure jury verdict.
- Litigated several high-profile libel disputes against large media companies, recently settling one in 2015 for mid-seven figures. Mr. Johnson currently represents Richard Simmons in a libel action against the Enquirer.
- Mr. Johnson with his partner, Neville L. Johnson, settled three class actions against the Directors Guild of America, Writers Guild of America, and Screen Actors Guild of America for tens of millions of dollars of unpaid foreign levies.
- Represented business owner in involved in partnership dispute resulting in a $10 million-dollar arbitration award for his client.
Uncovered systematic patterns of substandard medical care, resulting in reorganization of staffing and training at a county jail, in settlement of wrongful death and civil rights case, as featured in the cover story in Sacramento News & Review. The case settled for seven figures and was the largest settlement in the nation at the time for such a case.
- Contributed to, authored, and argued appeals before the California Court of Appeals and the United States Court of Appeal for the Ninth Circuit.
- Mr. Johnson is outside general counsel for WorldStarHipHop.com
- What Happened to Unjust Enrichment in California? The Deterioration of Equity in the California Courts, Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review Vol. 44:277, Fall 2010.
- Hollywood Docket: One-Sided World. New York State Bar Association, Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law Journal, Summer 2016, Vol 27, No. 2.
- A New Way to Revive a Corporation, Los Angeles Daily Journal (October 26, 2016).
- Hollywood Docket: Social Media, the Law, and You. New York State Bar Association, Arts and Sports Law Journal, Fall 2016, Vol. 27, No. 3.
- Before You Sign That Deal At Cannes…Produced By (The official magazine of the Producers Guild of America), April/May 2017.
- Hollywood Docket: Making the Perfect Pitch. New York State Bar Association, Arts and Sports Law Journal, Fall/Winter 2017, Vol. 27, No.3
- Hollywood Docket: Essential Clauses for Drafting an Ironclad Release and Consent Agreement. New York State Bar Association, Arts and Sports Law Journal, Spring 2018, Vol. 29, No. 1.
- Hollywood Docket: Tales and Lessons Regarding the Right of Publicity. New York State Bar Association, Arts and Sports Law Journal, Summer 2018, No. 2.
- Tales and Lessons Regarding the Right of Publicity. USC Entertainment Law Spotlight: 2018, Issue 2.
- Gerbosi v. Gaims, Weil, West & Epstein, LLP (2011) 193 Cal.App.4th 435
- Walker v. Geico General Ins. Co. (9th Cir. 2009) 558 F.3d 1025
- Panelist for Beverly Hills Bar Association, Entertainment Law Section, “Current Issues in Right of Likeness, Defamation and Privacy.” (July 2011).
- Panelist for Loyola Law School’s Legal Symposium, Injuries Without Remedies (March 26, 2010).
- Panelist for Beverly Hills Bar Association, Entertainment Law Section, “Right of Publicity: How Much Is Your Client Really Worth?” (March 21, 2012).
- Donald L. Stone’s Inn of St. Ives: “The Ever-Evolving Courtroom Drama of Net Profits.” (2012).
- Panelist for Beverly Hills Bar Association, Entertainment Law Section, The Right of Publicity: The State of The Current Law (March 2014).
- Panelist for Beverly Hills Bar Association, Entertainment Law Section, 2017 Entertainment Year in Review: Entertainment Litigation With Stars Of The Bar (January 2018).
- Panelist for California Society of Entertainment Lawyers, “I’m a Celebrity, You Can’t Do That, (Can You?).” July 2018.
- Southwestern School of Law: Entertainment and Media Litigation (2012 to present).