Attorney Neil J. Sacker, who had stints at Warner Bros. and also Miramax, has joined Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in the firm’s Los Angeles Entertainment Group. He joins from Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP. Sacker, who has been a lawyer for about 25 years, has repped producers/financiers of motion pictures, television series and Internet-based productions.
He first was hired in 1991 at Warner Bros., where he both negotiated and drafted theatrical contracts for talent, oversaw production legal matters and and handled complex rights issues. He then ran Miramax’s business affairs and legal department under Harvey and Bob Weinstein and was involved in the setup of about 75 films including Good Will Hunting and Best Picture Oscar winner The English Patient, which was the the subject of a complaint filed by the late Saul Zaentz over money owed; it was settled out of court on the eve of trial.
After the golden days of Miramax, Sacker became COO of the Yari Film Group who was credited as producer of Crash — another Best Picture winner that ended up in a lawsuit and a $12M award to the filmmakers over money owed — The Illusionist, Prime and The Painted Veil.
After that, he went into business with Mark Gill when he became President of the Film Department, which financed and produced a number of features, including Law Abiding Citizen and A Little Bit of Heaven. He also had a stint at Big Air Studios. There were no lawsuits that we know of over any of those films.