Ziffren , one of the legal industry’s most experienced entertainment attorneys has been chosen by LA Mayor Eric Garcetti to replace the late Tom Sherak, who passed away at the end of January.
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Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is reportedly on the verge of announcing the appointment of Ken Ziffren to be the city’s next film czar, replacing Tom Sherak, who passed away late last month.
The city’s Entertainment Industry and Production Office was created by Mayor Garcetti in the autumn of last year, in a determined effort to halt the exodus of film and television production out of the city, to other US states, as well as other countries, who offer attractive packages of tax incentives to entice film production to their city, state or country.
Tom Sherak, former head of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was chosen to be the inaugural head of the office in September of last year, but unfortunately was only able to carry out the position for a few months before succumbing to cancer, from which he had been suffering for a number of years.
Before succumbing to his illness, Sherak was reportedly making headway in his efforts to form a coalition of entertainment industry groups to institute various forms of legislation in order to increase funding for California’s film tax credit program to return the city to its former strong position, and make it a more attractive and competitive proposition.
Ken Ziffren was picked out by Mayor Garcetti for the honorary position in the light of his exceptional connections in the movie industry as well as his legal and mediation skills. Apart from having a number of high profile clients from his LA based legal practice, Ziffren is well respected for his effective actions when he helped to resolve the crippling Writer’s Guild strike in 1988 in the role of neutral mediator.
As was the case with the late Tom Sherak, Ziffren will be providing his services on a voluntary basis, when his post is confirmed, which is expected to happen in the next few days.
Kenneth Ziffren graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University later gaining a juris doctor degree from UCLA Law School.
Currently co-chairman of the UCLA School of Law Board of Advisors, and chair of the Entertainment & Media Law Program, Ziffren was a partner in the Ziffren & Ziffren law firm from 1967 to 1978, leaving them to become the founding partner of the successor law firm of Ziffren Brittenham the following year.