Actress, “Orange Is the New Black” – The past year has been a thrill ride for Aduba, whose breakout gig as Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren just scored her a guest actress Emmy. The thesp considers her first Broadway show, “Coram Boy,” one of her biggest accomplishments: “It had been a dream to be made part of that theatrical fraternity.” She loves New York City because she can “wake up every morning and be whatever version of myself I want to be, and all of my cohabitants accept it.”
President/General Manager, SundanceTV – “There was something about the human experience, coupled with the depth of the work that came together to create something remarkably special,” says Barnett of the network’s rise in the competitive creative landscape. Since her promotion to prexy and general manager last year, Barnett has overseen such critically praised programs as “Rectify,” “Top of the Lake” and “The Writers’ Room.” “I think the network’s destiny always was to be as unique and creative in television as the Sundance Film Festival always has been in film.”
Founder and President, GKids – As an independent film distributor, Beckman says he considers it a pleasure and an honor to support animated pics that include Hayao Miyazaki’s Studio Ghibli library. “I’m really proud of how much we’ve accomplished by sticking to our guns and only handling films that we care really deeply about.” And as for his hometown, “Any city that I can’t have Korean food at four in the morning, I don’t want to live in,” he says.
President, Lincoln Center – It was a successful summer for Lincoln Center, says Bernstein. The Lincoln Center Festival played at nearly full capacity for all of its presentations, its Mostly Mozart concert sold more tickets than ever before in its 48-year history, and the center’s free outdoor concerts, some of which were streamed live for the first time, attracted record audiences. “I’m proud of the commitment we’ve made to work with every borough in New York to get our programming both live and digitally into each one of those boroughs in the next 12 months,” he says.
President, Bravo and Oxygen Media – Berwick may be pulling double duty as the prexy of Bravo and Oxygen Media, but she doesn’t let the busy schedule slow her down. She has led Bravo to its most successful year, with ratings growth and Emmy noms for hit series “Top Chef” and “Inside the Actors Studio,” and new series “Million Dollar Listing New York” and “Flipping Out,” while Oxygen is prepped for a new onscreen look. “We do so many productions here, there really is an ease to it,” she says of Gotham. “It’s about the energy and the individualism and the style of the city.”
Theatrical producer, “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” “Of Mice and Men,” “This Is Our Youth,” “A Raisin in the Sun” – “The highlight of my year was in April when ‘Of Mice and Men’ and ‘Hedwig and the Angry Inch’ opened six days apart,” recalls Binder, who won a Tony for “Hedwig.” “That was pretty wild. Oh, and there was a little moment at the Tonys: During a commercial break, Hugh Jackman had audience members join him one at a time in a karaoke sing-along of ‘Mack the Knife’ and he walked over to me with the microphone. I never thought I’d end up singing at Radio City!”
Head, WME Theater Department – When Buzzetti first moved to Gotham in 1995, he had less than $300 and a passion for theater. In the years since, his love for legit took him to the top of WME’s theater division, which represented the 2014 Tony winners for best play, musical, revival and several others. He also helped bring home an Oscar for Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez’s “Let It Go” from “Frozen.” “I still can’t believe the life this city gave me,” he says.
President/CEO, Vevo – Since its formation in 2009 Caraeff has led Vevo, the biggest single content supplier to YouTube with 100,000-plus musicvids. He is also rapidly building audiences on its own properties and via distribution partners like Disney, Facebook and Yahoo. “To work hard and now, after five years, to have hundreds of employees generating revenue for artists and bringing music and joy to their fans in many countries around the world is incredibly fulfilling and meaningful to me,” he says.
Producer – The former first daughter entered the film world by making her producing debut on the Tribeca documentary short, “Of Many,” about a friendship between a New York rabbi and imam. Clinton spend two years working on the project, collecting 50 hours of footage, with director Linda G. Mills. “I’ve always known that documentaries are an important vehicle for education,” Clinton told Variety last spring. She called movies “a huge part of my childhood.”
Host and Executive Producer, “Watch What Happens Live”; Executive Producer,“Real Housewives” franchise – With a new book set for November release, producing gigs on numerous Bravo series, and now five years hosting “Watch What Happens: Live,” Cohen doesn’t know what it’s like to slow down. “That people want to come on the show is really exciting,” he says of his talkshow. “It sounds kind of stupid because we’ve been on for five years but to have people I really respect and admire in this business coming on ― it’s great.”
Courtesy of Bravo
Host, “Top Chef” – As the head judge on Bravo’s “Top Chef,” Colicchio is an undisputed arbiter of taste, a skillset that’s served him well as the founder of numerous restaurants across the U.S., including New York staples Craft, Craftbar and sandwich shop ‘wichcraft. He’s also set to host and judge Bravo’s “Best New Restaurant” competition series in 2015.
Carole Cooper & Richard Leibner
Presidents, N.S. Bienstock – Ever the high-powered dealmakers, Cooper and Leibner were instrumental in representing Robin Roberts, David Muir, Megyn Kelly and Bill Whitaker during a busy year for those news biz personalities. And in January, Bienstock was acquired by UTA. “We work as a family every day, which is very gratifying to us,” says Cooper. “Both of our sons are in business with us and were a major part of the deal with UTA.” The two love the theater, film and good restaurants of New York City: “We’re both born and bred in Brooklyn and have lived in Manhattan the last 25 years,” adds Leibner. “We can walk to all of the broadcast centers.”
Actor – With roles in the Roundabout Theater Company’s “Cabaret” revival and on CBS’ “The Good Wife,” along with an autobiography set for release in October, Cumming has been busy. “I love the eclecticism and the possibility for adventure,” he says, adding that he values the sense of community in the theater and being able to work in television at the same time. “I love that in the midst of this crazy, cool city, all this kind of madness, we’re still able to function. It’s so miraculous that it all happens.”
Host, “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” – Seven months after inheriting the “Tonight Show” from Jay Leno, Fallon’s star is still on the rise. He’s dominating the ratings in a competitive field by seamlessly blending humility with absurdity, while helping draw younger viewers to the latenight scene. The native New Yorker added two Emmys to his collection this year ― for his guest hosting work on “Saturday Night Live” and for “Tonight” in the outstanding interactive program race ― but he nearly stole the whole awards show by jokingly pretending to accept Stephen Colbert’s trophy in the variety series category.
Jim Glancy & John Moore
Owners, The Bowery Presents – New York City has no shortage of music venues, ranging from the grandeur and history of Madison Square Garden to the countless tiny dives scattered across the boroughs. Yet so many of the city’s hottest tickets are to be found for the Mercury Lounge (where the Bowery Presents started), Bowery Ballroom, Terminal 5 and Williamsburg Hall of Music, midsized venues that routinely attract headliners who could easily sell out larger sheds. Glancy and Moore run the Bowery Presents company, while founding principal Michael Swier remains a principal member and owner of the Mercury Lounge and Bowery Ballroom, but the beats go on.
Co-host, “The View” – The moderator on “The
View” since 2007, Goldberg managed to keep her seat at the Hot Topics table for season 18 ― welcoming back Rosie O’Donnell along with new hosts Rosie Perez and Nicolle Wallace. When she wasn’t voicing her opinions, she produced a HBO documentary about trailblazer comedian Moms Mabley, which she funded through Kickstarter — and popped up in a supporting role in Paramount’s “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.”
Host, “Project Runway” – Fashion consultant Gunn knows how to “make it work.” The adopted New Yorker (31 years
and counting) has risen to prominence with his authorial optimism on Lifetime’s “Project Runway,” which snagged an Emmy alongside Heidi Klum in 2013. The icon also makes time for philanthropy; he’s a PETA supporter and has contributed to the LGBT campaign “It Gets Better.” This coming March he will release a memoir on education. Gunn says the city is a large part of his work ethic: “It makes you ascend to do your very best work, because you want to send the message that you belong here.”
Maggie Gyllenhaal & Peter Sarsgaard
Actors – Each won critical raves this year: Gyllenhaal
for her politically charged performance (along
with her impeccable accent) as a British woman caught up in the Middle East conflict in SundanceTV/BBC’s “The Honourable Woman”;
and Sarsgaard as a did-he-or-didn’t-he death
row inmate in “The Killing.” The indie power
couple have made a home in Brooklyn with
their two young daughters. “I never felt comfortable in L.A.,” she recently told Gotham, “and I kind of pretended to myself that I always lived in New York.”
Bryan Bedder/Getty Images
Neil Patrick Harris
Actor – Trading his “How I Met Your Mother” designer suits for hot pants, platform boots and glam rock makeup in Broadway’s hit musical “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” — for which he won the Tony Award — Harris has spent the past year shunning any notion of typecasting. Up next for the actor is a dramatic role in director David Fincher’s “Gone Girl,” opposite Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike. He and new husband, David Burtka (they got married in September), are happily raising their twins in the Big Apple. “I love that you’re required to interact with the city,” Harris recently told Time Out. “Since you walk most places, there’s an energy that is constant.”
President, Syfy and Chiller – You could say 2014 has been a novel year for Howe, who’s in the midst of developing series from science fiction literary hits, including “The Expanse,” Lev Grossman’s “The Magicians” and Arthur C. Clarke’s “Childhood’s End.” He’s quick to credit his team: “They’re brilliant and tireless, and we’re all determined to win together,” he says. The best thing about being a New Yorker? Jokes Howe, “Knowing that we could absolutely survive a Sharknado!”
Daniel Katz, David Fenkel & John Hodges
Founders, A24 – Independent film distributor and production company A24 Films distributed its first film, “A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III,” in 2013, and has quickly established a track record of critically acclaimed independent films, many targeted at a younger audience than the average arthouse pic. With a 2014 slate that includes “Enemy,” starring Jake Gyllenhaal, “Under the Skin” with Scarlett Johansson, “Locke” starring Tom Hardy, “Obvious Child” with breakout star Jenny Slate and Kevin Smith’s upcoming “Tusk,” the Chelsea-based distributor is a fresh and successful face in New York film.
Co-head of theatrical, Gersh Agency – Ketay, who has been living in New York for decades, said she still feels privileged to be able to work in and live in a city that she loves. And Gotham has been just as good to her: In June she received the Lilly Award for Lifetime Achievement, which honor women in the theater. She’s the first agent ever to receive the award, which was presented to her by one of her clients, Tony Kushner. She also became a member of the board of directors of the Dramatists Play Service. But, she jokes, her biggest accomplishment may have been riding the N train every day and managing not to get bed bugs.
Executive Director, Film Society of Lincoln Center – The Film Society of Lincoln Center has been around for nearly 50 years, and executive director Klainberg, who took over the role in March, knows not to fix something that isn’t broken. The focus of her and her team is to expand on the work already done by the society and keep their programs fresh and innovative, and to encourage collaboration in the city and in Lincoln Center. “I think that we just continue the work of the last few years of the film society,” Klainberg says. “(We’re) assessing our role in the film community, figuring out how we fit into the larger work that’s being done throughout the city. (We’ve) created a real environment for collaboration.”
Agent, CAA – Lewis has her finger on the pulse of the music industry, representing artists both emerging and established: Iggy Azalea, Kanye West, 50 Cent, Pitbull and Eminem, whom she’s handled since the beginning of his career. “My biggest accomplishment is always going to be the elevation and growth of my artists, from delivering their first club show to selling out club shows, then selling out arenas and tours,” she says. “It’s about setting goals and achieving them.”
New York film Commissioner – “As I’ve visited sets and met with various members of the creative community over the last few months,” says Lopez, former co-exec producer of PBS’ “POV,” “I’m constantly reminded that the caliber of talent we have here in New York City is outstanding ― and I’m honored.”
Actress, “The Good Wife” – Three-time Emmy winner Margulies continues to shine as complex legal eagle Alicia Florrick on CBS’ “The Good Wife.” For its 100th episode, the cast celebrated by rebuilding homes damaged by Superstorm Sandy, an experience that deeply affected the star. While season five also bid farewell to Josh Charles’ Will Gardner, Margulies admits feeling a sense of accomplishment for convincing him to stay for 15 episodes for his final season, since “it gave the writers a great platform to write fantastic material.”
President, USA Network – Since ascending to the president’s chair at USA in 2011, McCumber has helped steer the cable net into new programming arenas, including reality (“Chrisley Knows Best”) and original comedy. “I am also particularly proud of ‘Suits,’” he says, “which creatively had one of its most powerful seasons yet.” He points to the renewal of the WWE deal as his biggest accomplishment of the year: “They’ve helped make USA the No. 1 cable network.” And why he loves being a New Yorker, he says, “Two words: Giants. Yankees.”
Senior Vice President and Partner, APA – McPherson is relatively new to Gotham, but he says his move three years ago was fulfilling. Noting the time zone changes and the faster pace, he says the city’s atmosphere makes for longer days and greater opportunities. His goals include bolstering APA’s talent department and honing in on the Broadway culture. “I just feel like everyone has a great training on the theater side,” he says. “I’ve always had an affinity toward that.”
Singer, Actress – Menzel may be a household name after singing “Frozen’s” Oscar-winning tune “Let It Go,” but she has also made a return to Broadway in “If/Then.” “It took me a long time to get back to a show,” says Menzel, whose last run on the Great White Way was in “Wicked.” She loves that she can draw parallels from the show in wandering the city.
“It’s a beautiful way to come back to New York,”
she says, adding that she’s excited to show her young son his first New York winter.
Head, NY Talent Department, Paradigm – Metzger says that it is particularly rewarding when his clients, such as Zoe Kravitz and Ezra Miller, continue to progress and grow with their careers. “I’m very proud of where Zoe Kravitz’s career is right now,” he says. “She’s making a lot of tentpole feature movies, smaller ones, pursuits with her band Lolawolf which we also represent ― mashing all that together so that she has the career that she wants. It’s been great to really see her grow as an artist.”
Host, “Late Night With Seth Meyers” – Jimmy Fallon may have reinvigorated “The Tonight Show,” but Meyers more than holds his own as NBC’s other latenight funny guy. He’s landed interviews with Taylor Swift and Joe Biden that have gone viral. And at this year’s Emmys, he proved that Tina Fey and Amy Poehler aren’t the only “SNL” alums who can earn raves for hosting an awards show.
Head, New York office, Principato Young – Michel has had a banner year with her clients, including the production of Queen Latifah-fronted musical, “Bessie,” for HBO. A film 22 years in the making, Michel says that it is one of the most thrilling accomplishments of her career, which thrives on the energy of New York. “It’s such an amazing city,” she says, “because it’s just so full of heart and grit and enterprise. When I wake up in the morning, I just feel really alive and energized and plugged into the city.”
Director, “Foxcatcher” – The helmer of “Capote” and “Moneyball” reached a new plateau with “Foxcatcher,” the drama about a 1996 Olympic wrestling tragedy. The film (which opens Nov. 14) is already considered an Oscar frontrunner, and earned Miller the best director prize at Cannes. “It always feels good when your film is positively reviewed, so I’m happy and grateful,” he says. “More interesting, though, is learning what the film means to people, how they personally relate to it.”
Musician – In the years since her guest verse on Kanye West’s “Monster” shot her to the top of the world’s “hottest MCs” lists, Minaj has been carrying a torch for female rappers. What’s less obvious, however,
is just how important the Queens native has been to continuing New York City’s proud tradition
of hip-hop dominance. Moving between hardcore rap and pop with remarkable ease, Minaj’s
summer hit “Anaconda” proved her highest charting single to date, and she made her first
live-action acting debut in “The Other Woman.”
Neilson Barnard/Getty Images
Theatrical producer, “The Bridges of Madison County,” “The Realistic Joneses,” “The Cripple of Inishman,” “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” – The musical “The Bridges of Madison County” is just one source of pride for Mindich, who backed four this past season. “I love having my office in the heart of the theater district and watching the tourists stream into the theaters, and come out clutching their Playbills,” she says, Mindich also works in nonprofits, and was the force behind Encores Off-Center, led by artistic director Jeanine Tesori at New York City Center.
Founder/CEO, Leftfield Entertainment – Since the sale of its first series in 2008, Leftfield has risen as one of reality’s major players. Now with 104 episodes of “Pawn Stars” under his belt this year — along with ITV Studio’s acquisition of a controlling stake — Montgomery says he’s inspired by the action in Gotham. “There’s all kinds of things happening in New York that spark creativity just walking down the street. It’s a very creative environment that’s always discharging something. Not always good,” he jokes, “but always something.”
Actress, “Beautiful” – Mueller is still reeling over her Tony win in June: “I’m still figuring out what it means,” she says, laughing. “Realizing the honor that it holds in the place of history and the other people who have won this is just wild to me. Absolutely wild.”
Host, “Last Week Tonight with john oliver” – Having parlayed a summer stint anchoring Comedy Central’s “Daily Show With Jon Stewart” into his own show for HBO where he has taken on everything from FIFA to Ferguson, Missouri, Oliver has spent the past several months living a version of the immigrant success story. “I get really angsty in idyllic surroundings,” he told the Daily Beast about living in New York. “What I need is noise, exhaust and a cityscape of cab drivers honking and swearing at people. That’s what puts me to sleep.”
Thomas Schumacher & Casey Nicholaw
Producer/President and Director, Disney Theatrical Group – Disney Theatrical Group has lots to brag about, including the $5 billion in ticket sales for “The Lion King.” This year, Schumacher and Nicholaw added another asset by transforming the once-shaky legit “Aladdin” into a huge hit. “I have been very lucky to work on an extraordinary range of projects in my career, but none was as challenging and therefore as gratifying as ‘Aladdin,’” says Schumacher. “Working with these amazing teams of artists to open ‘Aladdin’ on Broadway and ‘Shakespeare in Love’ in the West End in the same season ― it was nothing short of thrilling.”
Comedian, “Inside Amy Schumer” – While many comic giants head out West, Schumer continues to set her sights high in her hometown. After competing on NBC’s “Last Comic Standing” and Comedy Central’s “Reality Bites Back,” Schumer got her own show ― and earned an Emmy nom in her second year. Says Schumer, “I’ve never really gone with the pack too much and it makes me feel a little like a badass being able to produce and tape my TV show here.”
President, IFC Entertainment – IFC Film’s 12-year act of faith, Richard Linklater’s “Boyhood,” bowed to raves and has chalked up $30 million worldwide and still counting. Says Sehring, “When you live with a project for more than 12 years, it becomes a part of your life. I am just proud to have been a part of it.” The long gamble reflects well on AMC Networks, he says, “which strongly believes in supporting artists’ visions.” He’s also proud to be in New York, which “remains the center of independent filmmaking as well as the hub for world cinema.”
Robert Stanley & Jay Adya
Co-founder/Co-Managing Partner and Executive, Evolution Media Capital – A boutique investment bank, Evolution has negotiated the media rights in some of the biggest deals in sports. “Just being a part of the founding team here at Evolution has been certainly the greatest professional experience of my life thus far,” says Stanley. Adya’s most exciting development of the last year was forming the partnership between MSG Prods. and Tribeca Enterprises: “My clients get to see how this festival gets to match this brand and all of their marketing power.”
Lead Anchor, ABC News; Co-Anchor, “Good Morning America” – Stephanopoulos has enjoyed a meteoric rise since joining ABC News in 2002, securing the chief anchor position in July following Diane Sawyer’s shift towards new programming. Not content to rest on his laurels, the former political advisor to President Clinton also maintains his roles as co-anchor of “Good Morning America” and “This Week,” confiding his pride in the two shows’ “steady progress during a time of tremendous change.”
Co-host, “Good Morning America” and “Live! with Kelly and Michael” – Although he was born a Texan, Strahan has
had no trouble making New York his home.
The former defensive end spent his entire
NFL career with the New York Giants and successfully parlayed that into being a
daytime TV king. “I get to live out my biggest accomplishment each work day by co-hosting
two iconic New York shows. I’m so proud to
be a part of each show and have the opportunity to bring a little bit of New York to the world,”
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
Partner and Agent, UTA – Having joined UTA in January, Swardstrom quickly integrated his clients with the new company, which had multiple summer box office hits and more Emmy nods than any other agency this year.
“I think that professionally, the thing I’m most proud of this year is being a part of the UTA family at this point in the agency’s history,” he says. “It’s really been phenomenal.”
Musician – Upon the release of her breakthrough 2009
album, “Actor,” St. Vincent (Annie Clark)
and her eponymous band may have been overshadowed by the glut of fellow New York-based indie rock sensations. Now, however,
she stands taller than them all, with her David Byrne collaboration and recently released self-titled fifth album making her rock’s skewed
star of the moment. Clark killed it on “Saturday Night Live” this spring and even filled in for
the late Kurt Cobain during Nirvana’s induction
into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Chelsea Lauren/Getty Images
President, NBC News – Turness has a lot of balls in the air. The NBC News president is hard at work reviving the fortunes of “Today,” which lost its first-place rank to ABC’s “Good Morning America” in 2012; rejiggering “Meet the Press,” which launched with a new host (Chuck Todd) in September; and continuing her unit’s push into digital realms.
Eric Ray Davison
Partner, ICM – “When I started in New York
I was the only female agent in New York doing reality television,” says York, who has since worked with All3Media America, the home of CBS’ “Undercover
Boss,” and Sirens Media, currently at work on
“Real Housewives of New Jersey.” “I think that
we’re authentic,” she says of her fellow New Yorkers. “I think we all have a level of mutual respect for each other that is very significant.”