×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Agencies Overseas Keep Local Focus

U.S. talent reps establishing more outposts around the world

As showbiz gets increasingly global, U.S. talent reps are establishing more outposts around the world. But a cross-section of key markets shows that the tenpercenters in each country retain their own business style while they cooperate with the American invasion.

FRENCH A-LISTERS EMBRACE U.S. PERCENTERIES

U.S. agencies don’t have offices in France but have signed locals looking for an international career. Michel Hazanavicius and Berenice Bejo are repped by CAA, while WME signed Jean Dujardin, left, (who is represented by his brother and a lawyer on local projects).

Gaumont Intl. topper Cecile Gaget says talent increasingly hires American representatives and works with lawyers on French dealmaking, since the role of local percenters is often limited to negotiating contracts, unlike Hollywood representatives who develop material and help drum up funding. But, like U.S. counterparts, French agents are limited by a law that bans them from producing their content.

France has 60 talent agencies, but only a handful of key players. Bertrand de Labbey owns the two biggest, Artmedia and VMA, with 17 percenters repping 900 clients. Two fast-rising percenteries are UBBA and Adequat.

— Elsa Keslassy

INDIA STARS KEEP IT IN THE FAMILY BUT HELMERS FLY SOLO

CAA established a beachhead via its joint venture with India’s Kwan. The combo reps up-and-comers like Aditya Roy Kapoor and Chitrangda Singh.

Older-generation stars traditionally employ a functionary known variously as a manager, secretary or a public relations officer, or a family member. Exceptions are Kareena Kapoor, Salman Khan and Sanjay Dutt, whose negotiations are handled by independent uber agent Reshma Shetty. The Gersh Agency reps Irrfan Khan (“Life of Pi”), with Talent Mantra managing his local work.

Local agencies like Carving Dreams and Bling! Entertainment rep younger talent for commercials bookings, but not film work. Tulsea, India’s only agency for writers, handles A-listers, while Tarsame Mittal Talent Management reps musicians. Helmers operate as lone wolves and usually do not have representation.

— Naman Ramachandran

CHINA TALENT CROSSING OVER WITH CAA, UTA

In November, Li Bingbing signed with UTA to represent her overseas. The move is indicative of how Chinese talent perceives overseas agencies — as
a way to build a profile internationally.

In China, the agency biz can be divided into big U.S. players (such as CAA, which has a Beijing office) and the domestic players, in a sector that’s in its relative infancy.

Many large domestic producers, such as Huayi Bros., have agencies, which function more as managers. Others, including Stellar Megamedia and Beijing Chengtian 18, rep some rising stars of the Chinese cinema.

The market remains locally focused, because talent resents such innovations as paying commissions. The trend for stars is to start at a place like CAA or Huayi, and then have a trusted associate look after their business. That model may work in the short-term, but could reduce a star’s leverage.

— Clifford Coonan

More Film

  • ABA_062_DAU_0060_v0409.87501 – Rosa Salazar stars as

    Box Office: 'Alita: Battle Angel' Wins Dismal President's Day Weekend

    Fox’s sci-fi adventure “Alita: Battle Angel” dominated in North America, but its opening weekend win isn’t leaving the box office with much to celebrate. Independent tracking services estimate that this will be one of the lowest grossing President’s Day weekends in years. “Alita,” the cyberpunk CGI spectacle, earned $27 million when it debuted in 3,790 [...]

  • Bohemian Rhapsody

    'Bohemian Rhapsody,' 'Marvelous Mrs. Maisel' Among Cinema Audio Society Winners

    Queen biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody” won the Cinema Audio Society’s top prize for sound mixing at Saturday night’s 55th annual CAS Awards. The film is Oscar-nominated for sound mixing this year along with “Black Panther,” “First Man,” “Roma” and “A Star Is Born.” In a surprise over heavy-hitters “Incredibles 2” and “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” Wes [...]

  • Oscars Placeholder

    Make-Up and Hair Stylist Guild Applauds Academy's Stance on Airing Every Oscar Winner

    Rowdy boos were followed by triumphant cheers at the Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild Awards on Saturday in Los Angeles, as the Hollywood union touched on a week of controversy over a reversed decision to hand out four Oscars during the show’s commercial breaks. Hair and makeup was one of the four categories that would [...]

  • Marvelous Mrs Maisel Vice

    'Vice,' 'The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel' Lead Make-Up and Hair Stylists Guild Awards Winners

    Adam McKay’s Dick Cheney biopic “Vice,” starring Oscar nominees Christian Bale, Amy Adams and Sam Rockwell, won two awards at the sixth annual Make-Up and Hair Stylists Guild Awards Saturday night. The film won for best period and/or character makeup as well as special makeup effects. “Mary Queen of Scots” received the prize for period [...]

  • Bette Midler

    Bette Midler to Perform on the Oscars (EXCLUSIVE)

    Bette Midler will perform “The Place Where Lost Things Go” at the Oscar ceremonies on Feb. 24, Variety has learned. Midler, a longtime friend of composer-lyricist Marc Shaiman, will sing the song originally performed by Emily Blunt in “Mary Poppins Returns.” The song, by Shaiman and his lyricist partner Scott Wittman, is one of five [...]

  • Olmo Teodoro Cuaron, Alfonso Cuaron and

    Alfonso Cuarón Tells Why His Scoreless 'Roma' Prompted an 'Inspired' Companion Album

    Back around the ‘90s, “music inspired by the film” albums got a bad name, as buyers tired of collections full of random recordings that clearly were inspired by nothing but the desire to use movie branding to launch a hit song. But Alfonso Cuarón, the director of “Roma,” is determined to find some artistic validity [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content