Robert Rotstein grew up in Culver City, California, then the location of the famed MGM Studios and so the true “Hollywood.” (To this day, the city’s motto is “The Heart of Screenland.”) Robert’s elementary school was caddy corner to one of the studio’s back lots. At an early age, he became hooked on legal dramas—not only Perry Mason, the archetype of the legal mystery, but also on the politically charged The Defenders and lesser known shows like Judd for the Defense, The Young Lawyers, and The Trials of O’Brien—lawyers solving crimes and doing justice. Perhaps this early combination of life in an entertainment-company town and fascination with the lawyer-as-hero made it inevitable that Robert would one day become an attorney whose practice focuses on the entertainment industry, and later a writer of legal thrillers.
He earned an undergraduate degree from UCLA and graduated with honors from the UCLA School of Law, where he was an editor of the law review. After graduation, he was a law clerk to the Honorable Anthony M. Kennedy, then Circuit Judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and currently Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court.
Robert then went into private practice with a Beverly Hills law firm whose practice focused on the entertainment industry and copyright law. His first trial involved a copyright infringement lawsuit brought by a well-known science fiction writer against a major movie studio. Over the course of his career, Robert has handled lawsuits on behalf of Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones, Lionel Ritchie, John Sayles, Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds, James Cameron, and all the major motion picture studios, among others. He authored a law review article that explores the relationship between literary theory and copyright law, and has taught as an adjunct professor at Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, California. Robert is currently a partner in a major Los Angeles law firm, where he co-chairs the firm’s intellectual property department. Recently, he obtained summary judgment on behalf of writer-director James Cameron and his company in a lawsuit involving the blockbuster motion picture Avatar.