The Top 10 Entertainment Law Schools in the U.S.
October 4, 2022
Entertainment law touches every aspect of the entertainment industry. From film, TV, and music to publishing, gaming, and sports, entertainment law covers it all! But where should you go if you want to study entertainment law? The answer to that question isn’t always as clear-cut as it seems. At The Hollywood Reporter, we ranked the top 10 entertainment law schools in the U.S., based on each program’s reputation and other factors, to determine which of these colleges best prepare students for careers in entertainment law. Check out our rankings below!
1) Harvard University
In this ranking, Harvard University takes first place. It offers a three-year program with concentrations in business law, entertainment law, and intellectual property law. Students are also able to take courses from other schools at Harvard, including the Kennedy School of Government and the Department of Economics. The school has an acceptance rate of just 5%.
2) Northwestern University
Northwestern University is a private research university that was founded in 1851 and is located in Evanston, Illinois. Currently, the university has eight undergraduate schools and six graduate and professional schools, including law school which ranks as one of America’s top ten.
The law school at Northwestern University takes pride in its unique curriculum that includes a clinics program with hands-on experience for students working on real cases and getting to work with legal professionals from other disciplines like business or public policy.
Northwester’s law program also offers an LLM degree program for practicing attorneys wishing to pursue continuing legal education and specialization opportunities such as intellectual property law, international trade law, and environmental law.
3) New York University
New York University offers an Entertainment and Media law program, which is accredited by the ABA and has been ranked as one of the top 10 programs in North America by The Hollywood Reporter. NYU’s faculty includes several entertainment industry professionals,
who have won awards and worked on blockbuster films, TV shows, and Broadway productions. Some recent graduates of NYU’s program include the Executive Vice President at Warner Music Group; General Counsel at Sony Pictures Television; Head of Business Affairs for Walt Disney Studios; Senior Vice President for Business Development & Strategy for The Weinstein Company.
4) Loyola University Chicago School of Law
Loyola University Chicago School of Law is a private law school located near downtown Chicago, Illinois. It was founded in 1920 as Loyola University College of Law and it was one of the first law schools to open outside of New England and the East Coast. Today,
Loyola offers three degrees: J.D., LLM (Master of Laws), and JD/LLM (Juris Doctorate with a Master’s degree). The school has an incoming class size of around 300 students and offers a low student-to-faculty ratio (roughly 12:1). The school also has an active alumni network that helps graduates find jobs both before they graduate and after they leave campus.
5) Stanford University
Stanford University’s School of Continuing Studies offers a part-time, four-year program for adults who want to learn about entertainment law. Undergraduates can pursue a Bachelor of Arts with an emphasis in film, television, and digital media studies or communications through the Department of Communication.
The school also offers an MBA with a concentration in entertainment and media management; courses are designed to provide a wide variety of coursework that will enable students to excel as leaders and decision-makers.
For those interested in practicing law, Stanford Law School offers both traditional 3-year law programs as well as accelerated programs for applicants with undergraduate degrees from other schools.
6) Duke University
Duke University, located in Durham, North Carolina, is a private research university with a strong liberal arts curriculum. The university offers 45 different degree programs across three schools: Trinity College of Arts and Sciences, Pratt School of Engineering, and School of Law. Duke University is ranked as one of the top colleges for business and law by US News and World Report’s America’s Best Colleges list.
7) Brigham Young University (BYU)
BYU’s J. Reuben Clark Law School is a nationally recognized, top-tier law school with one of the strongest records for placing students into clerkships and graduate programs nationwide. The school offers a range of concentrations for students to study, including Intellectual Property and Communications Law, International, and Comparative Business Law,
Family and Community Development, Elder Law, and Environment and Natural Resources. One of its strengths is that it has an on-campus entertainment law program that provides insight into the various aspects of production law, including intellectual property rights enforcement, media law, litigation skills training, antitrust regulation development policy formulation, and legal ethics courses such as entertainment contracts drafting courses. In addition to this concentration BYU’s J.
8) Columbia University
Columbia University is ranked as one of the top law schools for entertainment law and boasts an alumni roster that includes Hollywood actor John Lithgow, film producer Brian Grazer, and talent agent Ari Emmanuel (co-founder of Endeavor). The school offers a variety of courses for students to take on their way to earning a Juris Doctor degree with a focus on entertainment law. Notable classes include Intellectual Property Rights, Contracts, Media Industries, and Comparative Media Industries.
Columbia’s Center for Law, Media, and Society (CLMS) is home to many of the university’s programs that focus on how legal issues intersect with entertainment industries.
9) American Bar Association (ABA) Section of International Law
Launched in 2017, the ABA Section of International Law is tasked with promoting and protecting international law, including those areas of law that cross borders, such as human rights and business law. It also educates the public about international law issues through conferences, lectures, and other educational events.
2) Stanford University School of Law
3) Yale University School of Law
4) Columbia University School of Law
5) New York University School of Law
6) Georgetown University Law Center
7) Boston College (Lynch School of Education & Social Policy), MA
10) Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law
Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law is a private law school located in Villanova, Pennsylvania. Villanova’s law program has been ranked as one of the best for many years, and it has a strong reputation for preparing students for careers in entertainment law. Villanova’s ranking as No. 1 on this list is based on three criteria: average LSAT score, academic reputation, and bar passage rate.
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