You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Jeff Kwatinetz resigns from the Firm

Co-founder's exit leaves co. on shaky ground

In what means the end of the road for the Firm, Jeff Kwatinetz resigned late Thursday from the management/production company he founded in 1997.

Kwatinetz told colleagues that he was leaving because in his mind, the company “was an embodiment of Rick Yorn, Dave Baram and myself,” a source said.

Yorn and ex-sister-in-law Julie Yorn exited Oct., 19 to form a new venture. Since then, prexy-chief operating officer Baram left the Firm to join the Yorns, as did Jennifer Killoran and merchandising exec and Snoop Dogg manager Constance Schwartz.

Kwatinetz could not be reached for comment, but he will split off and form his own entertainment company, taking an unspecified number of the remaining employees with him. Like the Firm, the new company will focus on music, TV and film management as well as production. Kwatinetz will continue to rep such music clients as Korn, Jane’s Addiction and Ice Cube.

What remained when Kwatinetz walked out the door of the Firm’s Wilshire Boulevard HQ on Thursday is unclear.

In all likelihood, it spells the end of a company that once seemed to have all the pieces to emerge as a powerhouse that could pollinate production and merchandising and branding opportunity with star management clients. Kwatinetz grew the Firm initially with a music business core, but the breadth of the company expanded dramatically when Kwatinetz acquired Artists Management Group in 2002 for a reported $12.7 million, as Michael Ovitz left that management venture.

The Yorns and other AMG clients joined Kwatinetz, bringing such star movie clients as Leonardo DiCaprio, Martin Scorsese, Cameron Diaz and Vin Diesel. The company grew again in 2004, when it merged with an entertainment marketing company run by Rich Frank, the former Walt Disney Studios president.

More Film

  • I Lost My Body

    French Animation 'I Lost My Body' Tops Cannes Critics' Week Winners

    “I Lost My Body,” a dark French animated film from writer-director Jérémy Clapin, has come up trumps in this year’s Critics’ Week program at the Cannes Film Festival, taking the strand’s top honor, the Nespresso Grand Prize. The film, which follows a young man’s severed hand as it struggles to be reunited with its own, [...]

  • Contract Placeholder Business WGA ATA Agent

    Talent Agents Blast Verve Agreement With Writers Guild

    The lead negotiator for Hollywood’s talent agencies has again blasted the Writers Guild and its recent agreement with the Verve agency — and cautioned other agencies against following suit. Verve defected from the major agencies on May 16 when it became the first sizable Hollywood talent agency to sign the WGA’s Code of Conduct. That [...]

  • Forest Whitaker

    Netflix Teams With Forest Whitaker on 'Hello, Universe' Movie

    Netflix and Forest Whitaker are collaborating on live-action family movie “Hello, Universe,” based on the 2018 Newbery Award winner and New York Times bestselling novel by Erin Entrada Kelly. Playwright and screenwriter Michael Golamco (“Always Be My Maybe”) will adapt the book. Whitaker and Nina Yang Bongiovi (“Fruitvale Station”) of Significant Productions will produce. The [...]

  • Lauren Ash44th Annual Gracie Awards, Show,

    Politics and New Abortion Ban Laws Dominate 2019 Gracie Awards

    Female empowerment was in the air Tuesday night as showrunners, writers and performers gathered at the 44th annual Gracie Awards to celebrate women breaking barriers and shattering glass ceilings within the entertainment industry. Sandra Oh, Patricia Arquette, Rachel Maddow and Connie Britton were among the honorees at the ceremony, which took place at the Beverly [...]

  • Spider-Man Homecoming

    Film and TV Productions Are Using Drones for Scouting Locations, Lighting and More

    Since a ruling by the Federal Aviation Administration in 2014 that cleared the use of drones in film and TV production, the acquisition of footage by these unmanned flying machines has become de rigueur for aerial shooting in cases when cranes or aircraft are impractical or unsafe.  As such, drones have been greeted enthusiastically not [...]

  • Filmmaker Maryam Touzani Talks About Her

    Filmmaker Maryam Touzani Talks About Her Cannes Debut, 'Adam'

    Debuting feature helmer-writer Maryam Touzani makes her Cannes bow with “Adam,” in Un Certain Regard. The Casablanca-set drama shows how a pregnant stranger changes the lives of a mother and her young daughter. What inspired your plot? When I moved back to Tangier after college, one day a young woman knocked on our door, looking [...]

  • Q&A With Juan Villegas on ‘Las

    Argentina’s Juan Villegas on ‘Las Vegas,’ Featuring at Cannes’ ACID

    CANNES – Buenos Aires’ director-producer Juan Villegas presented his debut “Saturday” at the Venice Festival and won awards at the Rotterdam and Sarajevo film festivals. “Suicidals” screened at San Sebastián. “Idleness,” his third feature, co-directed with Alejando Lingenti, screened at the Berinale. Produced by Salvador del Solar at Argentina’s Cepa Audiovisual and by Villegas’ production [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content