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WMA ups vets in revamp

Carlson, Fogelson to head percentery divisions

Filling the void left by the departure and promotion of two agents, the William Morris Agency has undertaken a restructuring that places senior veepees Rob Carlson and John Fogelman at the top of its motion picture literary and talent divisions.

Carlson will now serve as head of a newly combined literary and directors division, and Fogelman will head motion picture talent.

“We’ve studied this together, a lot, and there are a lot of inefficiencies in large-body representation companies,” explained Fogelman, adding, “We’ve come up with a way to be more efficient, and it all stems from convergence. We’re going to run this as a partnership.”

Their promotions, announced by David Wirschafter, worldwide head of motion pictures at WMA, were set in motion by recent staff changes. Hylda Queally, who most recently served as North American head of talent, moved to co-head William Morris’ Independent and International talent efforts (Daily Variety, March 1) — thereby creating the vacancy filled by Fogelman, who’s been with the agency since it merged with Triad in 1992.

Harris, who left to start an as yet unnamed production and management company based at USA Films (Daily Variety, April 20) has headed the directors division for just over a year. Carlson, who joined WMA in 1988, and became an egent in 1990, wil assume Harris purview of the directors pool, and will additionally take over the administrative responsibilities for WMA’s motion picture writers division, a role filled until now by veteran agent Alan Gasmer.

“John and Rob are close friends, and terrific agents,” said Wirtschafter, adding “they’ve come up with and we’ve endorsed a departmental restructuring and business strategy which takes advantage of their leadership skills and accrues directly to the benefit of our clients.”

Gasmer, who of late has been on a signing spree with young writers, including Henry Bean, Dana Olsen, Ken Friedman and Richard Regan, is turning his attention to those and new clients. Having served as head of the writers division for the last three years, Gasmer said he was “happy to pass the torch to Carlson,” to whom he said he’d served as a mentor at WMA, and that he felt the “I’ve done what I set out to do: To build a strong, young literary department.”

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