THE PURPOSE OF THE TRADEVINE IS TO ENCOURAGE THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY TO READ THEIR TRADES: VARIETY, HOLLYWOOD REPORTER, BACK STAGE, ETC. ENJOY LEARNING ABOUT YOUR INDUSTRY.
EACH FRIDAY, THE TRADEVINE SEEKS OUT A FEW OF THE INFORMATIVE TRADE ARTICLES YOU MAY HAVE MISSED. VISIT THE TRADE, ITSELF, FOR THE ENTIRE ARTICLE.
Hello everybody, I’m Pritesh Shah of the Actors Reporter and welcome to the TradeVine. Danika Quinn is on assignment. Happy Birthday to one of the founders of Actors Reporter, John Michael Ferrari. Our goal here at the TradeVine is to help you stay informed and to keep up with the trades, such as The Hollywood Reporter, Daily Variety, and Backstage.
The Hollywood Reporter, November 11th – The article is entitled, “Secrets of Hollywood Agency Mailrooms,” by Matthew Belloni, Jay A. Fernandez, Daniel Miller, and Lacey Rose. Everybody starts somewhere. In this article, four of Hollywood’s top talent agencies CAA, UTA, ICM, and WME, invited the Hollywood Reporter into the inner recesses of their moguls factories, where everyone from Ron Meyer to Rich Ross began their careers.
CAA, Creative Artists Agency, was founded in 1975 by a group of ambitious William Morris agents, including Michael Orbitz and Ron Meyer, the mailroom still requires strict attention to detail, as well as the traditional suit and tie (or business attire for women, who now join the mailroom in almost equal numbers.) the mailroom program is open-ended, meaning you get out when you’re good enough. The competition is so stiff that trainees must work as an assistant for a year before even starting the mailroom program.
UTA, United Talent Agency, was created in 1991, and now employs about twenty full-time mailroom staffers for its 122 agents. To interview for an agent’s desk, each wannabe submits himself or herself to four weeks of training at “UTA University.” It’s the same path followed by UTA partners, its president, and its producers.
ICM, International Creative Management, includes young ambitious wannabes who earn their way into the mailroom. Since 1975, ICM has wannabe agents typically push a mail cart for two to three months. Mailroom workers can be promoted to full-fledged assistants, and another year or so of rolling carts allows them to apply and interview with nine or 10 of the firm’s 140 agents for a spot in the official training program.
And lastly, WME, William Morris Agency, has everyone starting in the mailroom, from Dave Geffen to Barry Diller to Disney’s Rich Ross. WME selects 20 or so mailroom workers from about 250 applicants a week. Workers are paid a tiny hourly wage plus overtime as required by California law. But those allowed in the door spend time in an intense showbiz crash course, learning the ins and outs of the agency and Hollywood.
Daily Variety, Monday, November 7th – “The Newsman, Andy Rooney, was gruff and prolific,” by Sam Thielman and Paula Bernstein. Curmudgeonly CBS newsman Andy Rooney, who died last Friday, earned Emmys for his cantankerous, humorous essays on life’s minor annoyances on “60 Minutes.” But Rooney was also a prolific author and a distinguished essayist and documentary producer on radio and TV before establishing his cranky persona, working with Walter Cronkite, Harry Reasoner and Arthur Godfrey. He was 92. There will never be anyone else like him.
Also in the Daily Variety, November 7th – Life goes full circle in “All about Bella’s Baby,” by Stephen Schaefer. Summit Entertainment’s “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part 1” presents the wedding of Robert Pattinson’s vampire Edward and Kristen Stewart’s human Bella and the near-fatal birth of their half-vampire daughter. At Thursday’s Four Seasons junket, Pattinson admitted, “I knew that the story was kind of crazy,” but quickly added, “It was terrifying, going to the birth scene because of the violence and stuff in it, especially to Edward who’s always held back and logical about everything.” The thesp found himself “stuck between an emaciated dummy’s legs, chewing through a placenta and getting cream cheese and strawberry jam all over your face – and then pulling out a three-week-old baby out of that, a ‘baby’ with a wig on.” I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait for this next installment of “Twilight.” I’m a real fan.
Well, that’s it for the TradeVine this week. I’m Pritesh Shah. Thank you very much for watching. And remember, You heard it through the Tradevine!