Michael is a practicing attorney with a focus on startups, creatives, and entrepreneurs. He has also been a media professional with a background in film, video, Internet, and law. Michael is the former President of 2 Life! Films, LLC, which produced his comedy feature “Returning Mickey Stern.” After winning numerous awards in the US and abroad, “Returning Mickey Stern” was distributed in US theaters and abroad and is available on DVD (Pathfinder Home Entertainment – PG-13). Michael has served as an advisor to a number of production companies and film festivals, as well as Associate Producer on the Sundance entry “The Perpetual Life of Jim Albers” and Tribeca entry “The Look.” Michael’s spec script for “Without a Trace” was a finalist for the (s)cript magazine Television Writing Competition and his original screenplay “The King of Summer” was a finalist for the “Heart of Film” Screenwriting Competition. On the legal side of the entertainment industry, Michael has served as Law Clerk for New Video Group/Docurama, distributor of the A&E/History, Scholastic, and Major League Baseball labels, and has worked for ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Performers) and the entertainment firm Adelman & Lavaia. Michael has been involved in the drafting of agreements and negotiations with the companies guiding the future of media and technology convergence: Amazon Unbox, Apple iTunes, Netflix, etc.
Michael’s creative career began before attending Northwestern University, when he attended the Long Island School for the Arts (then known as The Cultural Arts Center of Long Island) as a visual artist. His 4x5 acrylic on canvas “20th Century Icon” was featured in the Sabbeth Art Gallery and a juried competition before he graduated high school. Michael’s creative endeavors continued to expand while he attended Northwestern University as a Performance Studies major. Michael became a theater critic for the Daily Northwestern and Art + Performance Magazine, and later Art Editor of Northwestern’s oldest journal of the humanities, Helicon. His short story, “Teddy Bear” was published in Helicon, and his short story “Semicolon” was a finalist in the Robert Van Sant Writing Competition. As producer and writer of “7th Grade Blues,” the largest scale independent 16mm film production on campus in 1995, Michael honed his resource development, marketing, and business skills for a wider audience. In 1996, Michael earned the Elie Wiesel National Award for Jewish Arts and Culture by launching the still-thrivingJewish Theatre Ensemble, which has co-produced a project with Chicago's famed Steppenwolf Theater Company, as well as Northwestern University’s legendary Dolphin Show.
Before entering the entertainment industry as a producer, Michael served as a Jewish Campus Service Corps Fellow, first as the Doppelt-Spielberg Fellow at Northwestern, and then as the Ziegler Fellow at the University of Southern California. As a JCSC Fellow, Michael created cutting-edge and innovative opportunities for Jewish students on campus who were not necessarily affiliated with Hillel or other Jewish organizations. Two of the many initiatives launched under his guidance were the award-winning Exodus! A 40 Hour Celebration of Freedom and the Beit Cafe Coffeehouse Concert Series (a Taste of Tel Aviv in Los Angeles). Before leaving Los Angeles, Michael competed on the television quiz show “Win Ben Stein’s Money;” he did not win Ben’s money, but did win a breadmaker, which he still uses.
Michael has taught screenwriting and film at St. John’s University and CUNY Queens College and has been a guest speaker at a number of schools including UCLA and NYU. Michael was one of 12 students selected for Northwestern University's Creative Writing for the Media Program, and also graduated from UCLA's Professional Screenwriting Program. Michael received his JD from the Hofstra University School of Law, where he attended on a Full Merit Scholarship, and was selected as a Dean’s Scholar. His former law school professor and famed trial attorney Bruce G. Clark recruited Michael after graduation, because Michael, in Bruce's words, was the best student Bruce had ever had in his 12 years of teaching.
Licensed since 2009
Hourly ($250-300/hour), Fixed (Sometimes), Retainer (Sometimes), Free Consultation (30 minutes)
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Michael is one of those rare breeds you don't come across too often in a lifetime. An individual with brains, a sincere heart, great ideas AND the energy, enthusiasm and motivation to turn those ideas into reality. You would think someone like this would be arrogant, but, on the contrary, Michael (though undoubtedly assertive) is uncommonly kind, thoughtful of his peers, and considerate - a gentle soul and a gentleman. I recommend him wholeheartedly and without reservation!
Diane Cooper Advertising Attorney
|Award Name||Grantor||Date Granted|
|Elie Wiesel Award for Jewish Cultural Programming||Hillel International||N/A|
|Attorney||Prywes Schwartz, PLLC||2014 - Present|
|Attorney||Bruce G. Clark & Associates||2009 - 2014|
|Law Clerk||New Video Group||2007 - 2009|
|Adjunct Lecturer||CUNY Queens College - Continuing Education Dept.||1999 - 2010|
|Association Name||Position Name||Duration|
|Nassau County Bar Association||N/A||2014 - Present|
|New York State Bar Association||N/A||2009 - Present|
|Hofstra University School of Law||Law||JD - Juris Doctor||2008|
|University of California - Los Angeles||Writing for Television and Film||Professional Certification||1997|
|Northwestern University||Performance Studies - Communications||BS - Bachelor of Science||1996|
|Guest Speaker at UCLA||Marketing & Independent Film||2003|
|Guest Speaker at NYU||Screenwriting & Camera Technique||2003|
|Richard Brown's "Filmmakers on Filmmaking"||Directing and Producing Independent Feature Film||2002|