Solo’s move to the management-production company owned by Lionsgate comes on the heels of a layoffs at WME and parent company Endeavor earlier this week. As a cost-cutting move, about 300 employees at WME were affected by layoffs, furloughs or a reduction in hours.
The move to become talent managers is a natural for literary veterans. Solo has long represented top TV showrunners, directors and scribes. A source close to the situation said Solo had worked closely with 3 Arts managers for years and was seen as a good fit personality-wise with the company.
Even before the pandemic crisis spurred Endeavor’s cuts, literary agents have been eyeing the management segue in order to formally reunite with writer clients who formally terminated them last year as part of the Writers Guild of America’s contentious reform campaign of its talent agency franchise rules.
Solo is among the first prominent WME agents to relocate to management but he’s likely to not be the last. Industry sources say numerous conversations are under way at management companies large and small, for alums of WME as well as UTA, CAA and ICM Partners as the legal standoff with the WGA drags on through federal court.
Solo had been with WME since early 2007. Before that he spent 10 years at ICM, rising to head of TV lit.
Lionsgate acquired a majority stake in 3 Arts Entertainment in May 2018. The company has been among the most successful management-production ventures with a roster of TV series under its belt that includes NBC’s “The Office” and “Parks and Recreation” and HBO’s “Silicon Valley” and “Insecure.”
News of Solo’s hire was first reported by Deadline.