Judith Karfiol began her career in the entertainment industry as a literary agent in Los Angeles, which provided a solid understanding of entertainment business practices and extensive experience negotiating film and television contracts. She later attended Southwestern University School of Law with the specific intention of practicing in the entertainment field. Today Judy’s entertainment practice consists of the full service representation of artists and production companies working in film, television, new media and publishing, involving original works and adaptations, drama and documentaries, live action and animation.
Transactions for Artists and Independent Producers Judy’s personalized representation of Artists focuses on drafting and negotiating contracts for screen and television writers, animators, graphic novelists, authors of fiction and of non-fiction. Development activities for artists include securing or selling rights to works of fiction and non-fiction, magazine articles, life story rights, screenplays, and live action and animated television series in both the scripted and “non-scripted” arenas, and negotiating agreements for writing services in all forms of traditional and new media. She counsels clients with respect to all aspects of their professional careers including agency and management representation, collaborations with other artists, employment, merchandising and licensing.
Production Legal Services Judy represents independent film makers and television production companies in connection with the development, production and post-production of both dramatic and documentary feature films, and both scripted and non-scripted programming for broadcast and new media. She advises clients with respect to union and guild matters, chain of title and copyright issues, production policies and guidelines.
Employment Negotiations Judy represents studio, network and independent production company executives in contract negotiations with their employers. In addition she represents literally dozens of animators and game developers in their employment negotiations with studios, production companies and independent producers.
Juris Doctor, Southwestern University School of Law
Ph.D., Master of Arts, Comparative Literature, Univ. of Southern California
Bachelor of Arts, French and Anthropology, Univ. of Southern California
Beverly Hills Bar Association
California State Bar
British Academy of Film and Television Arts, Los Angeles
1992, California State Bar
1992, United States District Court for the Central District of California
Professional Experience and Internships:
Warner Bros, Inc. Music Division – business and legal affairs: internship
MCA/Universal Merchandising – business and legal affairs: internship
MGM/UA Worldwide Television Group – business and legal affairs: internship.
Davenport Lyons, Solicitors, (London) Entertainment Division: internship.
Writers Guild of America, West: Executive in charge of special projects.
Teaching and Lecturing:
2005 – Present: California Institute of the Arts faculty in the School of Film/Video. Judy teaches “Entrepreneurial Studies” in the Character Animation Program introducing animation and other students to basic principles of copyright and contract law, practical issues involved in developing and producing films as well as accepting employment in the film, television and new media industries, and starting their own businesses.
2009: California State University at Long Beach: Visiting professor in Film and Video, Judy taught “Film and Television Law” for graduate and undergraduate students.
Professional Non-Legal Career:
In addition to teaching Comparative Literature and working as a literary agent, prior to law school Judy lived in London for 4 years where she established and published the Karfiol Literary Report, a monthly scouting report of English fiction and non-fiction for independent film and television companies, with subscribers in the US, the UK, France and Australia.