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Christiane Stuetzle is a partner of Morrison & Foerster (International) LLP and Co-Chair of the Global Film & Entertainment Practice of Morrison & Foerster. She is a Certified Specialist for Copyright and Media Law & Arbitrator on the International Arbitration Panel of the IFTA (Independent Film & Television Alliance, Los Angeles).

Her practice focuses on all matters in the field of film, music & entertainment as well as legal and strategic advice and lobbying support at all stages of the development, financing, production, and distribution of audiovisual products and at the intersection of content and technology.

In regards to production of audiovisual content, she advises several major Hollywood studios, independent producers, and gaming and toy companies on the development, financing, production, and distribution of films, series, and other content. For some clients, she also functions as their contact for external business & legal affairs in Germany. 

She is the go-to lawyer when it comes to aligning standards between the United States and Germany. Christiane’s projects include the TV series “Queen’s Gambit”, “Berlin Station,” and “Homeland,” and international feature films such as “The French Dispatch,” “Without Remorse,” “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” “Cure for Wellness,” “Book Thief,” “Monuments Men,” “Hitman: Agent 47,” and “Big Business,” among others. Berlin newspaper “Der Tagesspiegel” calls her “Hollywood’s lawyer in Berlin”.

Another significant part of her work is the ongoing legal advice relating to the distribution and available of content, including the ongoing advice to TV channels, streaming services, social media, and other online platforms on all distribution--related matters from regulatory requirements, youth protection, statutory film levies, holdbacks, user terms, rights clearance as well as negotiations with rightsholders.

Based on the increasing impact of the EU legislation to multi-territorial businesses, Ms. Stuetzle is also closely monitoring current and upcoming EU legislation, such as the EU Copyright Directive, and is assisting multiple clients with legal and lobbying support, strategic advice on alignment of their business model, and products with these new legal requirements and corresponding risk mitigation strategies.

Christiane Stuetzle is the founder and organizer of the Berlin office's annual entertainment panel & reception held and co-hosted by the US Embassy to Berlin and the Motion Picture Association of America (MPA) for high-ranking guests from the creative industry, the finance sector and politics

Christiane Stuetzle is active in an organization for the top women in the German media industry and is a board member of the Female Supervisory Board of Hypo Vereinsbank/Unicredit. She regularly holds lectures on Copyright, Film, and Media Law at the Epi Media Institute in cooperation with the University of Potsdam and is Christiane Stuetzle is co-author of the Munich Handbook of Copyright and Media Law.

Representative Experience

  • Several Hollywood studios and film production companies on the development, financing (including available film subsidies), production and distribution of series and films, including “Queen’s Gambit,” “Homeland,” “The French Dispatch,” “Without Remorse,” “Berlin Station,” etc.
  • Handling of business and legal affairs for the local language division of a major studio, handling of local language (co-)productions, e.g., “Heilstaetten,” “Golden Twenties,” “Antonio im Wunderland,” “Rico, Oskar und die Tieferschatten,” “Rico, Oskar und das Herzgebreche,” “Rico, Oskar und der Diebstahlstein,” “Doktorspiele,” “What a Man,” “Schlussmacher,” etc.
  • Toy company on the production and distribution of digital content (series, apps, games, lottery games), user-generated content and music rights clearance including GEMA
  • Streaming service on license and exploitation related matters and youth protection, including rights clearance of a film library for distribution on a worldwide family entertainment-related streaming service, youth protection aspects, including the app to the service, contractual questions, German statutory film levy, and music licenses and available film subsidies for new productions
  •  Social media platform on the EU Copyright Directive and its European implementation process, including the extended liability for online content sharing service providers, strategic advice on alignment of the business model and its products with these new legal requirements
  • Pay-TV channels on the application for a German broadcasting license, German age rating for films and series, advertising and product placement regulations, EU content quota, etc.
  • Film library evaluation and due diligence.
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