Fairfield University professor and actor William Windom to present paper on the business of show business


Dr. Sharlene McEvoy, professor of business law in the Charles F. Dolan School of Business at Fairfield University, and actor William Windom (of "Murder She Wrote" and "To Kill a Mockingbird" fame) will present a paper on show business law at the Northeast Academy of Legal Studies and Business in Cooperstown, N.Y., on Saturday, April 27, at 2 p.m.

Meanwhile, Mr. Windom will be talking with Dr. McEvoy's students in classes on Monday, April 22: "The Legal Environment of Business" (4 p.m.) and "The Law of Business Organizations and Financial Transactions" (7 p.m.); and on Tuesday, April 23 at 7 p.m.: "Labor Law."

Dr. McEvoy has made it a trademark of her teaching to find innovative ways to link her classroom lectures with tangible experiences for her students. Last semester she used her recently purchased 2001 Toyota Prius, one of the new gasoline-electric hybrid cars, to drive home the lessons she was teaching in her Environmental Law course on ultra-low emissions vehicles and the Clean Air Act.

This semester, she is helping her students explore legal issues in show business that relate to agents, unions, ageism and sexism in Hollywood for her course in the Legal Environment of Business. Involving an actor of Mr. Windom's stature makes the discussion more poignant when discussing that agents can now be invested in by media companies and the legal implications that has for the agent-client relationship.

Among the class assignments Dr. McEvoy hands out is one requiring students to select a film from the list of 100 movies with courtroom scenes. Each student must take a separate film, view it and then write a paper on the legal issues in the film that relate to issues they have discussed in class.

Mr. Windom was the opposing attorney to Gregory Peck's portrayal of Atticus Finch in "To Kill a Mockingbird." In addition to his role as Angela Lansbury's confidant in "Murder She Wrote," Mr. Windom has performed in one-man shows about author and World War II correspondent Ernie Pyle and writer James Thurber.

Among Dr. McEvoy's other creative endeavors to enliven her teaching experiences have been: enrolling in the Field of Dreams Fantasy Camp to learn about the tax implications of playing baseball in multiple municipalities; whitewater rafting in Colorado Springs to familiarize herself with exculpatory contracts used by rafting outfitters; and swimming in a Florida lagoon with two 800-pound dolphins, while researching the legal aspects of the Marine Mammal Protection Act.

Media Advisory: In addition to the classes listed, William Windom will be on campus Wednesday and Thursday afternoon if you would like to arrange an interview.

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Media Contact: Nancy Habetz, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2647, nhabetz@fairfield.edu

Posted on April 6, 2002

Vol. 34, No. 215