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Brooklyn Law School hosts film festival with Tony Gilroy

November 14, 2014 By Rob Abruzzese Brooklyn Daily Eagle
The Brooklyn Entertainment and Sports Law Society hosted a film festival event at Brooklyn Law School (BLS) Tuesday and Wednesday with screenings of “Michael Clayton” and “The Devil’s Advocate,” after which writer and director Tony Gilroy (left) spoke with BLS Dean Nick Allard. Eagle photos by Rob Abruzzese
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At the first meeting this semester of the Brooklyn Entertainment and Sports Law Society (BESLS), Jose Landivar brought up the idea of doing a film festival. He suggested highlighting the films “Devil’s Advocate” and “Michael Clayton” because of their realistic representation of lawyers.

Then Landivar mentioned that he was going to invite Tony Gilroy — who wrote both movies and also directed “Michael Clayton” — to the event.

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“When he said that he was going to try to get Tony Gilroy to come, I just said, ‘OK, Jose. Good for you,’ and didn’t really think much else of it,” said Keith Bloyd, president of BESLS. “Then two weeks later, Jose sent me an email with the subject like, ‘He answered,’ and I didn’t even know who he was talking about.”

It turns out that Gilroy was enthusiastic about the idea and became part of the film festival, titled “Moral Courage in the Face of Corruption: The Films of Tony Gilroy.” The two-day event at Brooklyn Law School (BLS) featured a showing of “Devil’s Advocate” on Tuesday and “Michael Clayton” on Wednesday, followed by a Q&A with Gilroy.

“These are classic films for lawyers,” Landivar said. “It reveals a lot about their profession and the decisions they have to make in their profession. We thought that spotlighting these films would be good for law students. The entertainment law group has never done anything like this where we bring in the artistic elements and the law elements.”

About 50 to 60 law students showed up each night to watch the movies, and snacks and drinks were provided by The Brazen Head. In addition, two scholarships were given out for Kaplan bar review courses.

The event was part of an effort by the BESLS to make BLS a more prominent figure in the industry, especially in the field of sports and entertainment. Last week, it hosted a fashion event with the general council from Louis Vuitton and Michael Kors, and next week, it will host a sports event featuring council from the NBA, as well as former general managers from various pro sports teams.

“The reason students came here for law school and joined our society is because they want to be in the sports and entertainment law field,” Bloyd said. “This is New York, the heart of it all, and this group allows for each of them to create and foster relationships in these fields.

“We try to provide an event like this where there is an informational aspect to it and some sort of entertainment aspect while giving everyone a chance to network.”

This particular event achieved BESLS’ goal, as Gilroy stuck around for an hour after the movie to answer questions from BLS Dean Nick Allard and students. The program may have backfired on students who are fond of Allard, though — he and Gilroy had a great rapport during the Q&A, and Gilroy even joked, “I would cast you in a film.”

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