Betty White honored her longtime agent Jeff Witjas with the newly created Talent Agent Lifetime Achievement Award Thursday at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza.
White was among presenters at the Talent Managers Association’s 13th Annual Heller Awards. The awards honor the people off-screen who make everyone on it a success: talent agents, managers and casting directors.
“When you’re lucky enough to have a fine agent who knows the business and knows what he’s doing, who also happens to be a very dear blessed friend, you’re the luckiest old broad on the planet,” White said of Witjas.
Opening his acceptance speech, Witjas said his life was destined to be a talent agent. He offered a list of 25 reasons he’s been as successful as he has, among them working hard, having the ability to read people and believing that “no” doesn’t exist.
Number 10: “I’m damn cute.”
The theme of the show was “Re-imagine,” meant to reaffirm a commitment by managers and agents to continually push Hollywood forward. The theme coincided with the honoring of RJ Mitte, known for his role as Walter White’s son on AMC’s “Breaking Bad.” Mitte, who has cerebral palsy, was honored by non-profit Friends of Californians with Disabilities.
“I am very lucky to be here today and it’s definitely my honor because there are so many people that deal with exactly what I do and we try to bring awareness to so many different aspects of the human condition,” Mitte said.
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Other honorees included manager Joanne Horowitz winning the Pat McQueeny Award for management, John Hartmann winning a Heller Lifetime Achievement Award for management and Daryn Simons winning the TMA Manager of the Year.
The Heller awards are named for longtime late manager Seymour Heller, whose clients included Regis Philbin.