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Former Warner Bros. VP and Senior Counsel Joins Donaldson + Callif as Partner

Dale Nelson, 20-year veteran of Warner Bros. intellectual property group joins the independent film industry’s go-to law firm 

LOS ANGELES – Donaldson + Callif is pleased to announce the addition of former Warner Bros. Vice President and Senior Intellectual Property Counsel, Dale Nelson, as Partner. Ms. Nelson brings more than two decades of legal experience handling copyright, trademark and right of publicity matters to Donaldson + Callif, a Los Angeles-based law firm representing some of the industry’s most prominent independent producers of film, television and web-based content, with a focus on clearance.

“Dale’s longevity and expertise in the intellectual property space will be an invaluable asset to our practice,” commented Partner Michael C. Donaldson. “Her addition underscores our commitment to providing our clients with the top legal talent in the industry.”

“Having known Donaldson + Callif for many years, I’ve always been impressed with the high caliber of the firm’s work and their tremendous impact in the film industry,” said Ms. Nelson. “I’m grateful to be joining this talented team and be a part of the independent film industry’s massive growth.”

While serving as Vice President and Senior Intellectual Property Counsel at Warner Bros., Ms. Nelson was legal counsel for some of the studio’s most well-known properties, including Harry Potter, Looney Tunes, Lord of the Rings, and iconic DC Comics properties, such as Superman and Batman. She is a frequent lecturer on the topic of intellectual property law and serves as Treasurer for the United States Chapter of the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI-US), as well as on the Copyright Committee of AIPPI-International. Ms. Nelson obtained her Juris Doctor from the University of San Francisco School of Law and is a former member of the Board of Directors of the Los Angeles Copyright Society.

Handling every legal aspect to get clients’ projects created, from financing, development and production to distribution, Donaldson + Callif worked on more than 30 films being shown at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, and two films nominated for the 2019 Best Documentary Oscar – Free Solo and Minding the Gap.


Donaldson + Callif is a Los Angeles-based law firm that specializes in representing independent producers of film, television and web-based content. They focus on financing, production and distribution, but are also renowned for their clearance and intellectual property work, especially in the area of fair use. The firm published a book on Clearance & Copyright 4th Edition a legalese-free guide providing filmmakers with essential advice on almost every conceivable rights issue they might encounter.

Donaldson + Callif, LLP
400 South Beverly Drive, Ste. 400

Beverly Hills, CA 90212

t: (310) 277-8394

f: (310) 277-4870