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Brent A. Turman
Biography

Brent's commercial litigation practice covers a variety of matters including business disputes, breach of contract, complex arbitration, and intellectual property. In 2017, 2018, and 2019, he was recognized by his peers as a Super Lawyers "Rising Star" for business litigation.


Before Brent’s legal career, he was an Associate Operations Producer for ESPN / ABC College Football. In addition, Brent produced commercials, industrial videos, in-arena entertainment, and music videos for clients throughout North America. Brent has continued to use this experience to assist clients in the Entertainment, Media and Sports industry by preparing and reviewing relevant contracts and navigating clients through business disputes. Outside of the office Brent produces short films and co-hosts Hilltop Hoops, the podcast for Southern Methodist University men’s basketball fans.

Education

  • J.D., cum laude, Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law, 2012
  • B.B.A. & B.A., cum laude, Southern Methodist University, 2007

Related Industry

Representative Matters
  • Secured jury verdict finding that his client was a partner in the entity that initially published the "Fifty Shades of Grey" trilogy books. The jury found the client was entitled to over $13.2 million in royalties, interest and attorneys' fees.
  • Brent and a team of attorneys secured a unanimous defense verdict in favor of manufacturer of downhole sand and gas separation products in a $4.5 million dollar patent infringement suit.
  • Obtained $10.3 million summary judgment for entity that loaned funds for production of feature film distributed by a major studio.
  • As lead attorney in emergency expedited briefing, persuaded federal judge to quash notice of deposition for a Fortune 50 CEO.
  • Represented multiple University Presses when approached to option film or television rights to books.
  • Brent and a team of attorneys represented an LLC and one of its members in claims against a large Chinese state-owned enterprise, as well as several of its "subsidiaries." In pursuing the arbitration claim, the team also defended its clients in two federal proceedings in the Northern District of Texas, one federal proceeding in the Northern District of California, one proceeding in the Delaware Court of Chancery, and one appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. The panel awarded the claimants over $68 million (confirmed in 2018).
  • As lead counsel, Brent obtained multiple favorable settlements on behalf of a campus safety and student conduct software provider against several public and private universities around the United States.
  • Obtained summary judgment for large residential developer in negligence action.
  • Obtained summary judgment for water park after oral argument, defeating the plaintiff's premises liability action.
Noteworthy
  • Selected by attorney peers for inclusion as Texas Rising Star® for Business Litigation, Thomson Reuters, 2017 – 2019
  • Eagle Scout
  • Best Short Film, 2018 AutomaCon Short Film Festival
  • Best Drama, 2018 Wildwood Film Festival
  • Best Director, 2014 Universal Film Festival
Activities & Memberships
  • Highland Park United Methodist Church Day School Advisory Board, Member
  • Texas State Bar College, Member
  • Texas Association of Motion Media Professionals, President
  • Dallas Bar Association, Sports & Entertainment Law Section, Chair (2016)
  • Women Texas Film Festival Advisory Board, Member
  • Texas State Bar Entertainment Law Institute, Planning Committee Member (2018)
  • Texas Bar Association, Entertainment & Sports Law Section, Council Member
  • D Magazine Young Leaders Network
  • Dallas Producers Association, Producer Member
  • SMU Meadows Alumni Advisory Council
  • Texas UIL Young Filmmakers Festival and USA Film Festival, Judge
Publications
  • The Right to Tweet, DBA Headnotes, 2019
  • Are Handshake Deals in the Entertainment Biz on Shaky Ground?, The Texas Lawbook, 2018
  • Are You in a Business Partnership and Don’t Know It?, Dallas Business Journal, 2018
  • Lifting the Veil on Sponsored Social Media Influencer Posts, DBA Headnotes, 2018
  • Defamation Mitigation Act Can Extend Deadlines Under the Texas Anti-SLAPP Statute, Texas Entertainment & Sports Law Newsletter, 2018
  • Texas Film Commission Director Chops Down Machete's Allegations, Texas Entertainment & Sports Law Newsletter, 2015
  • DIY Media Distribution: Eliminating the Middleman, DBA Headnotes, 2014
  • After Official Review, Fourth Circuit Rules No Unsportsmanlike Conduct in NFL's Use of Franchise Logo, Texas Entertainment & Sports Law Newsletter, 2014
  • Guilds and Unions in a Right-to-Work State, Entertainment Law Institute, 2014
Presentations
  • "The State of the Art Law in Dallas," Dallas Bar Association, Legal Panel, 2019
  • "What Kanye Can Teach Us About Litigation," Tarrant County Young Lawyers Association, 2019
  • “A Content Creator’s Guide to Staying out of the Courtroom: Defamation and Business Disparagement in Texas,” Entertainment Law Institute, 2018
  • “Obeying Terms of Use When Conducting Business on Social Media,” SMU Dedman School of Law, Guest Lecture, 2018
  • “Editing: Finding the Story and Editing Ethically,” Docu Fest, Legal Panel, 2018
  • “Legal Issues in Filmmaking,” Women Texas Film Festival, Legal Panel, 2018
  • “Top 10 Video Game Decisions: From Donkey Kong to eSports,” Texas State Bar Annual Meeting, 2018
  • “After the Handshake Deal: Proving What’s Not in Writing,” Austin Bar Association: Business, Corporate, & Tax Law Section, 2018
  • “Fifty Shades of Greed: A Case Study on Partnership by Conduct,” Houston Bar Association, 2017
  • “Social Media Law,” SMU Dedman School of Law, Guest Lecturer, 2017
  • “Art Law Roundtable,” Arts Counsel Texas, Legal Panel, 2017
  • “Success in the Screenwriting Business,” The Dallas Screenwriters Association, Panel, 2017
  • “Script to Screen: Legal Issues Relating to Filmmaking,” Arts Counsel Texas Lunch & Learn, 2017
  • Entertainment Law Practitioners Panel, SMU Dedman School of Law SELA, 2017
  • “Fifty Shades of Greed: A Case Study on Partnership by Conduct,” Entertainment Law Institute, 2016
  • “The Book of Sanctions: Enforcement of NCAA Bylaws,” Dallas Bar Association, Legal Panel, 2016
  • “Lights, Camera, Action: Legal Issues Affecting Film Festivals,” Dallas Bar Association, Legal Panel, 2016
  • “Why I Learned to Love Contracts,” Arts Counsel Texas Lunch & Learn, 2016
  • Entertainment Law Panel, UNT Dallas College of Law, 2016