Abigail Payne > Harbottle & Lewis LLP > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Harbottle & Lewis LLP
7 Savoy Court

Work Department

Film and TV


Abigail is a Partner in the Film and TV Group providing advice on all aspects of development, finance, production and distribution of feature films and television programmes and exploitation of ancillary rights. Particular expertise is in advising film funds, EIS schemes and structuring international co-productions and providing advice on tax incentives (including the film and high-end TV and animation production tax credits), and international subsidies for a wide international client base of producers, distributors, broadcasters, exhibitors, agents, insurance companies and artists.

Her recent highlights include:

  • Advising Marv Studios on the production and financing of the film Tetris, starring Taron Egerton, directed by Jon Baird, which will be available on Apple TV, including the arrangements between Marv and Access Industries, Union Bank, the completion guarantor and Apple.
  • Acting for Sir Terry Pratchett’s estate on the co-production arrangements with BBC Studios for the television series The Watch based on the Discworld novels written by Sir Terry Pratchett produced in 2020.


  • Trained Theodore Goddard; qualified 1995;
  • Business Affairs Executive BBC (Drama) 1995-97;
  • Associate Harbottle & Lewis 1997 to current, Partner 2002.
  • Won Legal 500 TME Individual of the Year 2019 (London)




  • New Producers Alliance
  • Women in Film & Television


  • Bath University (BA European Studies with French and German Hons);
  • Nottingham Trent University (CPE; LSF).


Polo, tennis, skiing and yoga

Lawyer Rankings

London > TMT (technology, media and telecoms) > Media and entertainment (including media finance)

(Leading individuals)

Abigail Payne (Media Finance)Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP demonstrates deep expertise across a wide range of various media industries. For example, the firm acted for Mav Studios on financing arrangements for a feature film with Matthew Vaughn, and advised ATC on its IPO on the Aquis Stock Exchange. On advertising Sacha Wilson and Michael Lister  lead the team, whereas Sarah Lazarides is responsible for the firm’s film & TV group. The ‘brilliant all-rounderKostyantyn Lobov heads up the video games division jointly with Mark Phillips . Abigail Payne takes the lead on media finance matters, Kieran Jay on music. A highly esteemed individual in publishing, Shireen Peermohamed heads the corresponding practice. And finally, Neil Adleman is the go-to contact at the firm for theatre clients.

London > Industry focus > TMT

The TMT offering at Harbottle & Lewis LLP was strengthened with the March 2022 arrival of Emma Wright from Deloitte Legal. Under Wright, the firm has established a new technology, data and digital group, which will coordinate the firm’s efforts in areas including AI and technology regulation. The team is also especially noted for its work in media and entertainment, where Abigail Payne and Peter Armstrong are key contacts in the film and TV group, headed up by Jonathan Berger. Other areas of experience include IP, advertising, and defamation mandates.