Paradigm shifts into MCA digs

Exex makes move to leave 'room for growth'

There’s a Paradigm shift coming to the agency business.

With his billionaire brother Tom Gores, Paradigm prexy Sam Gores has partnered to pay $45 million to acquire the old MCA headquarters. Location will house both Sam Gores’ talent and literary tenpercentery and Tom Gores’ LBO firm Platinum Equity.

The 2½-acre campus had housed MCA from its inception in 1937 to 1964. Last owner was the scandal-plagued Global Crossing, whose topper Gary Winnick is expected to remain as a tenant for the next year, then depart. Paradigm’s Gores says he will move his tenpercentery over from its Century City location in June or July.

In an interview with Daily Variety, prexy Sam Gores said the reason for the move “is growth. It leaves a lot of room for growth,” he said.

Located at 360 N. Crescent, neo-Georgian building fronts both North Crescent Drive and little Santa Monica Boulevard and more than doubles the size of Paradigm’s quarters. At almost 25,000 square feet of space, the property’s south tower held roughly 430 employees at Global Crossing’s apex.

That leaves the north tower for Platinum and Paradigm with room to spare — with 100,000 square feet, it affords ample space for Platinum’s 150 employees and Paradigm’s 110 agents and staffers. More, it leave the door open for acquisitions, Paradigm’s Gores said.

Sam Gores admitted that the purchase had immense symbolic significance: What else could one make of acquiring the nest of a behemoth like MCA — the venerable agency split apart by a Justice Dept. consent decree for entering into production? It comes at a time when agencies are operating without a master franchise agreement with the Screen Actors Guild and unregulated artist management companies are getting into production and distribution.

“From their offices here a half-century ago, Jules Stein and Lew Wasserman built one of the most powerful entertainment organizations in the world,” said Sam Gores of MCA.

Both companies have access to liquid capital and talent. Only last November, Platinum committed $20 million to fully finance Paradigm client Andy Garcia’s feature directorial debut with indie pic “The Lost City,” a drama set in the waning golden days of Havana. It will star Garcia, Robert Duvall, Dustin Hoffman, Benicio Del Toro, Javier Bardem, Benjamin Bratt and Tomas Milian.

Tiffany tenpercentery

“I think in a year from now, we’ll certainly be bigger,” he said, “but we want to be the Tiffany of all agencies. I’m not sure you need another ‘big’ agency to compete with CAA or William Morris. It will be bigger not just in mass but in concentrated strength.”

Mark Barnhouse, a spokesman for Platinum, said that while no entertainment acquisitions were currently on the front burner at Platinum, “opportunities in entertainment is clearly one of the things we’re interested in.”

Company made its fortune in the software sector, acquiring and operating mission-critical tech businesses, and began considering real estate last year as the firm’s success and growth rate accelerated and stretched capacity in its Los Angeles offices. Founded in 1995, Platinum was ranked No. 44 on the most recent Forbes magazine list of 500 largest private companies. It currently has offices in Boston, London, Paris, New York and Los Angeles.

Previous building owner Winnick acquired the address for $41.5 million in 1998 as headquarters for Global Crossing and Pacific Capital.

It features white Corinthian porticoes topped with a decorative cupola, gabled roofs, antique iron gates and finely wrought sculpted moldings. The buildings are separated by a plaza courtyard graced with an antique Italian bronze and terra cotta fountain surrounded by a 30-foot high marble ionic colonnade — all designed by Paul Revere Williams, the first African-American Fellow of the American Institute of Architects.

More Scene

  • Angler Los Angeles

    Angler Is L.A.'s Major New Seafood Destination

    San Francisco transplant Angler is set to make a major splash in Los Angeles, as Joshua Skenes’ innovative seafood-focused restaurant opens in the somewhat unlikely location of the Beverly Center. Angler is the latest and the most ambitious restaurant to join a fresh crop of spots, including Cal Mare and Yardbird, on the recently refurbished [...]

  • Bette Midler

    Bette Midler Set for Special Performance at New York Pride (EXCLUSIVE)

    Bette Midler is set to appear at New York’s Pride Main Event this Saturday (June 29) at the Javits Center. In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Stonewall, she’ll perform a song accompanied by composer Marc Shaiman, of “Hairspray” and “Mary Poppins Returns” fame. Her stage time is set for 11 p.m. Also scheduled to [...]

  • Magic Johnson, Larry Bird

    Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Robin Roberts Honored at 2019 NBA Awards

    The NBA went Hollywood on Monday night, mixing basketball legends with a star-studded list of presenters including Samuel L. Jackson, Tiffany Haddish and “This Is Us” star Justin Hartley at the 2019 NBA Awards. Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal hosted the third annual award show, which aired live on TNT, kicking things off with a surprise [...]

  • Naomi Watts and Gretchen Carlson'The Loudest

    ‘The Loudest Voice’ Stars Naomi Watts, Russell Crowe Talk Roger Ailes

    Roger Ailes may have been the force behind the creation of Fox News, but the late newsman’s legacy will forever be his atrocious sexual harassment of several of the network’s female anchors and producers. Showtime premiered its new limited series “The Loudest Voice,” which chronicles Ailes’ rise and fall, on Monday night at the Paris [...]

  • Billy Eichner Power of Pride Variety

    Billy Eichner on Taylor Swift's 'Calm Down' Backlash

    When Taylor Swift released her “You Need to Calm Down” music video, it seemed like every member of the LGBTQ in Hollywood was included — except for Billy Eichner. “I’m still not gay enough for Taylor Swift — or too gay — I don’t know what it is,” Eichner joked at Variety’s Power of Pride [...]

  • Bebe Rexha

    Mumford and Sons, Sting, Ciara, Bebe Rexha Light Up Cannes Lions

    There was no shortage of excellent music at the 2019 edition of Cannes Lion. The international gathering of creatives drew top music brands – among them: Spotify, Live Nation, iHeartRadio, SiriusXM/Pandora, VEVO and Universal Music Group – and a slew of well-known acts to stages across the Croissette, to villas above the city and onto [...]

  • Patrick Wilson

    Patrick Wilson, Mckenna Grace on Scary Stories From 'Annabelle Comes Home' Set

    Tales of spooky occurrences on the sets of horror movies like “The Exorcist” and “Poltergeist” have circulated for years, and it looks like “The Conjuring” franchise is following in their footsteps in that regard. The cast of “Annabelle Comes Home” shared their unnerving stories from set at the film’s premiere on Thursday night at the Regency [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content