O'Melveny Litigator Robert Schwartz Exits for Irell & Manella

He follows the departure of six attorneys from O'Melveny to Latham & Watkins in November.
Robert Schwartz

In the latest departure from powerhouse firm O'Melveny & Myers, Robert Schwartz, chair of the firm's entertainment and media litigation practice, has joined Irell & Manella.

Schwartz, who has been featured on The Hollywood Reporter's Power Lawyers list, is a top litigator on the side of film studios. He recently filed MGM's suit in the settled fight over whether Universal's spy film Section 6 infringed on the James Bond franchise. In addition, he's considered a go-to video game attorney, with previous clients including the creators of Call of Duty in a case against publisher Activision (he secured them a settlement) and Atari over the rights to Dungeons & Dragons.

He will serve as partner in the firm's litigation group, working from its Los Angeles office. He joins the firm with VIctor Jih, a partner in O'Melveny's business and trial litigation group.

Their exits from O'Melveny follow the departure of six transactional attorneys from the firm to rival Latham & Watkins in November, led by partners Joe Calabrese and Chris Brearton. For Irell's part, their hires follow the hire of Joshua Grode from Liner in August 2014 to co-chair the firm's transactions group.

"Irell began by serving the most sophisticated needs of the entertainment industry. I've litigated against and alongside its lawyers, and consistently respected their skill and creativity," said Schwartz in a statement. "I feel privileged to join such a stellar firm."

"Adding Bobby and Victor reinforces our best-in-class media litigation practice and together with the media transactional practice further solidifies Irell's position as a global leader in media and entertainment law," added Grode and the head of the firm's media and entertainment litigation practice Steve Marenberg.

Said an O'Melveny spokesperson in a statement, "We wish them the best. Our Century City-based trial lawyers will continue to handle the most cutting-edge, high-profile litigation matters, including in the entertainment industry, as part of one of the largest litigation teams in all of Southern California."

May 7, 10:31 a.m. Updated with O'Melveny's statement.