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Executive Summary / The Pacesetter

Executive Summary

Creative Artists Agency unseated long-time leader William Morris for the No. 1 position on the list of largest Talent Agencies in Los Angeles County.

Since the list last ran in September 1999, the total number of agents at the top 15 talent agencies has increased by 14.3 percent, to 789 agents.

In adding 57 and 23 agents respectively, No. 1 CAA and No. 4 United Talent Agency added the greatest number of agents in the period. Second place William Morris reported 125 agents, down 17 from 1999’s 142.

In addition to the ever-shifting flow of talent among the agencies, 2002 marked an important change in relations between the Association of Talent Agents and the Screen Actors Guild. On April 19th, the 65-year-old Master Franchise Agreement between the two groups expired. There are currently no talks scheduled between the two groups.

Nicole Taylor

The Pacesetter

Creative Artists Agency

With 179 agents in Los Angeles County, CAA claims the top spot on the list of largest Talent Agencies in Los Angeles.

Founded in 1975 by a handful of former William Morris agents led by Michael Ovitz, the firm is now headed by Robert Lovett. Beverly Hills-based CAA includes among its clients Robert DeNiro, Ron Howard, Sandra Bullock, Will Smith, Robert Redford, Nicolas Cage and Renee Zellweger as well as musical talent Santana, Beastie Boys, Bob Dylan and Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Sparked by Ovitz’s highly successful “Polar Bear” advertising campaign with Coca-Cola in 1991, CAA continues to focus on a “marketing through entertainment” strategy. Coke split with the agency after Ovitz’s 1994 departure, but re-signed CAA as its “entertainment marketing consultant” in 2000.

CAA has expanded its marketing department over the past few years, servicing corporate clients including Motorola, Nextel and Kmart.

The agency still uses its clout to package its clients in projects across industry lines, including moving singers Beyonce Knowles and Reba McIntyre into acting.

Nicole Taylor

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