MPAA's Fabrizio Fired, Arrested

Motion Picture Association of America general counsel Stephen Fabrizio has been fired after being arrested in Washington on charges of blackmail and sexual abuse, according to multiple reports in motion picture trade papers. 

MPAA confirmed to B&C that Fabrizio was out.

"This is to inform you that Steve Fabrizio’s employment with the MPAA has ended for violating certain terms of employment," said MPAA chief Charlie Rivkin in an email to staffers. "I’ve asked Daniel Robbins to be interim general counsel as we embark on a search for a permanent replacement."

An MPAA spokesperson said that, if the charges are true, they are "both shocking and intolerable to the association. We had no prior knowledge of this behavior before these charges were publicly filed.” 

Fabrizio had been senior executive VP and global general counsel, joining the motion picture trade association from law firm Jenner and Block, according to the portion of his bio on the MPAA website that still remained in a Google search--the bio has been removed from the MPAA website. 

He was co-chair of the content, media and entertainment practice at the firm.  

Fabrizio's LinkedIn bio describes him as "one of the preeminent high tech copyright and content protection lawyers in the country." 

His resume also includes SVP, legal and business affairs, at the Recording Industry Association of America/  

The allegations come in a #MeToo environment in which both Hollywood execs and actors are on notice that the consequences of alleged sexual impropriety can be swift and potentially career-ending.  

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.