Anjan Choudhury is a partner in the Los Angeles office of Munger, Tolles & Olson. Mr. Choudhury was named an “Up Next” rising star in entertainment litigation in Variety’s 2015 Legal Impact Report. In 2016, Mr. Choudhury was named one of the “Best Under 40” lawyers in the country by the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association.
Mr. Choudhury practices in a wide variety of matters involving civil, administrative and appellate litigation, focusing primarily on matters for clients in the entertainment industry. He has represented clients in state and federal court as well as complex administrative proceedings, including before the Copyright Royalty Board. Some of Mr. Choudhury's significant representations include representing or counseling:
- Fox’s studio and network entities in contingent compensation disputes, brought by executives Barry Josephson and Kathleen Reichs and actors David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel, that allege affiliate dealing and accounting claims concerning broadcast, new media, international exhibition and domestic syndication of the television show Bones.
- SoundExchange on behalf of record companies and recording artists in the Webcasting IV Copyright Royalty Board proceeding that set statutory royalty rates owed by webcasters for non-interactive streaming in the United States through the year 2020.
- Television studios in a wide range of litigation disputes, including matters concerning profit participation, copyright, licensing of digital rights on emerging platforms, exclusivity, and applications of California's seven-year rule.
- Major and independent record companies and global rights agencies negotiating on behalf of the same in matters concerning digital licensing with major music streaming services.
- Record companies in disputes concerning the payments of royalties, including SoundExchange in a dispute with Young Money Entertainment and recording artist Lil Wayne and Warner Brothers Records in a breach of contract action brought by the recording artist James Taylor and his former producer Peter Asher.
- The American Psychological Association as amicus curiae in a number of early cases involving same sex marriage, including cases before the California, Iowa and North Carolina Supreme Courts.
Mr. Choudhury often speaks at industry conferences about music licensing and other legal issues. In 2017, he presented a Strafford CLE webinar concerning negotiating and structuring music licenses, addressing issues of royalty rates, digital sampling, and copyright. In 2016, he spoke on a panel concerning music licensing at the annual South By Southwest (SXSW) Music Festival. He has written for the Copyright Alliance and spoken on a variety of entertainment industry topics, including presentations to the Harvard Law School Association and the North American South Asian Law Students Association. Mr. Choudhury is a member of the Entertainment Law Committees of both the Media Law Resource Center and National Asian Pacific American Bar Association.
Mr. Choudhury has also maintained an active pro bono practice. Past representative matters include representing:
- Asian Americans Advancing Justice affiliates nationwide, as counsel of record, as amici curiae in the U.S. Supreme Court case Jennings v. Rodriguez, which concerns the due process rights of noncitizens subject to immigration detention.
- Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (CAST), a non-profit service provider to victims of human trafficking, in a variety of matters concerning the rights of trafficking victims and the privileges that apply to communications between service providers and those victims, including successfully obtaining a court order to protect the confidentiality of CAST's shelter for survivors of human trafficking.
- A national network of anti-human trafficking organizations as amicus curiae in challenges to multiple state immigration laws before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.
- A victim of human trafficking in federal district court in obtaining a million dollar judgment against her diplomat employers.
- National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers as amicus curiae at the U.S. Supreme Court in a case involving the meaning of “aggravated felon” provisions at the intersection of criminal and immigration laws.
Mr. Choudhury is deeply committed to issues of diversity and inclusion in the legal profession and community at large. He is co-chair of the Diversity Committee and co-chair of the firm’s MTO Fellows Program, an innovative pipeline program that works with 25-40 diverse students each year in applying to law school and succeeding in the legal profession.
Outside the firm, Mr. Choudhury is the advisor to the Board of Directors and past president of the South Asian Bar Association of Southern California. He has served on the Board of Governors for the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Los Angeles County (APABA) and is a member of the Executive Committee of the Fulfillment Fund Leadership Council’s Board of Directors. He is also a past member of the Board of Directors of the South Asian Bar Association Public Interest Foundation.
Mr. Choudhury served as a clerk to the Honorable Marsha S. Berzon on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Mr. Choudhury received his J.D. magna cum laude from Harvard Law School in 2004. While at Harvard, he served as an editor and supreme court chair of the Harvard Law Review, was elected First Class Marshal, was a semifinalist in the Ames Moot Court competition, where he earned the Best Oralist Prize, and was awarded the Dean's Award for Community Leadership.
Mr. Choudhury received his B.A. summa cum laude in political science from George Washington University, where he was elected Phi Beta Kappa and awarded the John Morgan Prize. During his undergraduate education, he served as national director of political affairs for College Democrats of America.