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Agent started with MCA and founded Preferred Artists

Literary agent Lew Weitzman, who founded Preferred Artists Agency and worked with numerous Hollywood clients, died June 30. He was 76.

Among his  clients were Leonard Katzman, producer of “Dallas,” James Lee Barrett, writer of “Smokey and the Bandit” and “The Green Berets,” western writer Jim Byrnes, John McGreevey, John Baskin and Roger Shullman, Jay Moriarity and Mike Milligan, Ann Beckett, Paul Cooper, and Dick Christie.

Raised in Los Angeles, Weitzman graduated UCLA and joined MCA after serving in the military.  In 1966, he began a seven-year agency relationship with the William Morris Agency, specializing in writers and producers.

In 1973, Weitzman formed his own agency, Lew Weitzman and Associates, which he supervised for the next ten years.

In 1983, Weitzman sold the agency to the Sy Fisher Company, a division of Taft Entertainment. He became head of the agency unit, and remained there until the 1988 Writers Guild strike.

He then founded Preferred Artists Agency, which is still active.

For the last 20 years, he was a member of the Valleyaires, a men’s chorus in the Valley, as well as a tenor in several barbershop quartets.

Weitzman is survived by his wife Dale; sons, Matt, writer and co-creator of “American Dad” and Paul, an agent, as well as five grandsons.

Donations may be made to the Art of the Brain, a charitable organization fighting against brain cancer.

A memorial service will take place at the DGA, 7920 Sunset Blvd., on Wednesday, July 24 from 2:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.

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