Power Lawyers: THR Unveils America's Top 100 Entertainment Attorneys
UC Hastings College of the Law
Why he matters: Who says Marvel always holds the upper hand when it comes to talent negotiations? Nelson says he managed to ink a favorable deal for client Chris Pratt to star in Guardians of the Galaxy. "We were able to negotiate on equal footing with Marvel, which is a credit to the demand for Chris in the marketplace," explains Nelson, known as an especially aggressive dealmaker, who this year also hammered out a pact for Edgar Wright to direct Marvel's Ant-Man. When client Jason Clarke signed to star in Fox's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Nelson says he faced "a daunting negotiation environment, but Jason had so many fans from Zero Dark Thirty and his other work that it evened the playing field." Other coups include striking a seventh-season pact for Californication star David Duchovny that makes him among the only cable actors earning backend profits.
Big deal: Nelson also extended longtime client Peter Jackson's The Hobbit deal to include a third installment, due in 2014.Click here to read THR's complete Power Lawyers list.