On July 30, 2015, Relativity Media, along with 144 of its affiliates, filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The multi-million dollar entertainment company, which produced films such as The Social Network, The Fighter, Limitless, and others, is headquartered on Beverly Blvd. in Beverly Hills. As of the date of the bankruptcy, according to its court filings, Relativity and its affiliates had approximately 89 full- and part-time employees and approximately 760 temporary production personnel in the film and television side of the business.
Lead bankruptcy counsel for Relativity are Rick Wynne, Bennett Spiegel, and Lori Sinanyan, three well-known Los Angeles bankruptcy lawyers. The most recent hearing in the case on August 25 was an all-day affair to consider Relativity’s request for debtor-in-possession financing and for approval of procedures so that it can sell all of its assets within the next six weeks. At that hearing, Relativity’s lenders — who are owed $350 million on account of pre-petition obligations and another approximately $50 million which they have advanced or committed to advance since the filing and who are also the proposed buyers of all of the assets for a credit bid of approximately $250 million — were represented by Mark Shinderman, another prominent Los Angeles bankruptcy practitioner. At that same Court hearing, Mr. Wynne and Mr. Shinderman sparred for hours with Evan Jones, another noted Los Angeles bankruptcy attorney, who represents a hedge fund that had also advanced money to Relativity.
Others making appearances at the Court hearing were veteran Los Angeles bankruptcy attorneys Joseph Kohanski, representing the directors’, screen actors’ and writers’ guilds, and Ted Stoleman, on behalf of a licensor of the film Act of Valor. A review of the case docket shows notices of appearance in the case by many other Los Angeles bankruptcy lawyers including Brian Davidoff of our office, Peter Gilhuly, Pamela Webster, Sam Newman and others, representing a variety of Los Angeles-based production companies, talent, or other creditors or contract parties of Relativity.