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BUSINESS
By New York Times News Service | June 6, 1995
Hollywood's most closely watched deal ended up on the cutting-room floor yesterday as negotiations for Michael Ovitz to become head of the entertainment giant MCA Inc. unexpectedly collapsed.The end of the talks scuttled plans by Seagram Co.'s president, Edgar Bronfman Jr., to give Mr. Ovitz, chairman of the Creative Artists Agency, the reins of MCA, which Seagram now controls.Mr. Ovitz, who wields enormous clout in Hollywood as the top deal maker in the movie business, had been seeking about $250 million in compensation and equity from Seagram in return for agreeing to give up his majority stake in the talent agency and run MCA, individuals involved in the negotiations said.
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ENTERTAINMENT
By Jay Hancock and Jay Hancock,Sun Staff | March 13, 2005
DisneyWar By James Stewart. Simon & Schuster. 572 pages. $29.95. Enron and Worldcom notwithstanding, I hold fast to several quaint and comforting notions about big business. I like to think executives attain their positions through merit and loyalty. I believe it's what you know, not whom you flatter. I believe CEOs usually have shareholders' best interests at heart and always keep boards and colleagues informed about important decisions. I believe Dallas and The Apprentice are not realistic portrayals of corporate life.
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BUSINESS
By DOW JONES | November 19, 2004
GEORGETOWN, Del. - Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Officer Michael D. Eisner testified yesterday that he told Disney's directors he was hoping to "trade" President Michael Ovitz to Sony Corp. on the same day he told a national television audience that he would hire Ovitz again. In his fourth day on the witness stand, Eisner said he met with directors on Sept. 30, 1996, during a celebration of Walt Disney World's 25th anniversary, and told them he wanted Ovitz to leave Disney and was hoping Sony would hire him. If Ovitz went to Sony, that would have ended Disney's obligation to pay $140 million in severance.
BUSINESS
By DOW JONES | November 19, 2004
GEORGETOWN, Del. - Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Officer Michael D. Eisner testified yesterday that he told Disney's directors he was hoping to "trade" President Michael Ovitz to Sony Corp. on the same day he told a national television audience that he would hire Ovitz again. In his fourth day on the witness stand, Eisner said he met with directors on Sept. 30, 1996, during a celebration of Walt Disney World's 25th anniversary, and told them he wanted Ovitz to leave Disney and was hoping Sony would hire him. If Ovitz went to Sony, that would have ended Disney's obligation to pay $140 million in severance.
BUSINESS
By Richard Verrier and Richard Verrier,LOS ANGELES TIMES | October 21, 2004
GEORGETOWN, Del. - Their wives were close friends. Their Aspen vacation homes were a 10-minute drive apart. When one underwent heart surgery, the other kept vigil at the hospital. But whatever personal chemistry Walt Disney Co. chief executive Michael D. Eisner and former Disney President Michael Ovitz enjoyed didn't work professionally. So Eisner pushed out his friend, who never forgave or forgot. Nearly eight years later, the two men find themselves joined again, this time in a courtroom in this small Delaware town.
NEWS
By New York Times News Service | August 15, 1995
Surprising even the most sophisticated entertainment executives for the second time in two weeks, Walt Disney Co. announced yesterday that talent agent Michael Ovitz would become Disney's president.The move pairs Mr. Ovitz, widely considered the most powerful man in Hollywood, with Disney's chairman, Michael D. Eisner, the most powerful man in the entertainment industry.The news caught Hollywood nearly as off guard as the announcement two weeks ago that Disney would become the world's largest entertainment company by acquiring Capital Cities/ABC Inc. for $19.2 billion.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Jay Hancock and Jay Hancock,Sun Staff | March 13, 2005
DisneyWar By James Stewart. Simon & Schuster. 572 pages. $29.95. Enron and Worldcom notwithstanding, I hold fast to several quaint and comforting notions about big business. I like to think executives attain their positions through merit and loyalty. I believe it's what you know, not whom you flatter. I believe CEOs usually have shareholders' best interests at heart and always keep boards and colleagues informed about important decisions. I believe Dallas and The Apprentice are not realistic portrayals of corporate life.
BUSINESS
By Newsday | June 17, 1994
Michael Ovitz, the Hollywood agent whose deals have repeatedly shaken up the worlds of entertainment and advertising, yesterday announced he is hiring a top AT&T executive to lead Creative Artists Agency into the new multimedia world.The executive, Robert Kavner, 50, will seek ways to tie CAA and its long list of movie and music superstars, writers and directors into the so-called information superhighway. That could include their involvement in anything from CD-ROM and movies-on-demand to computer information networks and video games.
BUSINESS
By Michael Dresser and Michael Dresser,Sun Staff Writer | November 1, 1994
A star of sorts was born in Hollywood yesterday as three of the nation's regional Bell telephone companies came together to bankroll a new media venture to produce and acquire programs for their video systems of the not-too-distant future.The $300 million newcomer, prosaically dubbed the Media Co. until a more suitable name can be found, is the progeny of Bell Atlantic Corp., Nynex and Pacific Telesis Group. Hollywood talent agent Michael Ovitz served as midwife for the deal, which will create a "virtual network" covering six of the nation's top seven media markets, including Baltimore- Washington.
NEWS
By Neal Gabler | August 24, 1995
THE FOXES ARE finally in the Hollywood chicken coop, or at least one might be excused for thinking so. Sylvester Stallone signed a reported three-picture, $60 million contract at MCA/Universal shortly after his former agent, Ron Meyer, was picked to run the studio.And one can only imagine what the installation of the world's most powerful agent, Michael Ovitz, as the chief executive at Disney might portend for his old clients.After years of grumbling about Ovitz and his Creative Artist Agency's alleged high-handedness in brokering with the studios for talent, the studio chieftains seem to have surrendered by inviting Ovitz and Meyer into the system.
BUSINESS
By Mary McNamara and Mary McNamara,LOS ANGELES TIMES | October 30, 2004
GEORGETOWN, Del. - Michael Ovitz stayed in a hotel with no room service. High-powered Los Angeles attorneys learned that there are places where "freeway accessibility" means there is one. One and a half hours away. Vanity Fair columnist Dominick Dunne ate in a restaurant where the salad dressing came in plastic packets and, for a minute or two, no one knew who he was. Hollywood has come to Georgetown, Del. The suit filed by Walt Disney Co. stockholders trying to recoup $200 million in payments and interest tied to the exit package given to Ovitz after being fired by Disney chief executive Michael D. Eisner in 1996 is finally being heard.
BUSINESS
By Richard Verrier and Richard Verrier,LOS ANGELES TIMES | October 21, 2004
GEORGETOWN, Del. - Their wives were close friends. Their Aspen vacation homes were a 10-minute drive apart. When one underwent heart surgery, the other kept vigil at the hospital. But whatever personal chemistry Walt Disney Co. chief executive Michael D. Eisner and former Disney President Michael Ovitz enjoyed didn't work professionally. So Eisner pushed out his friend, who never forgave or forgot. Nearly eight years later, the two men find themselves joined again, this time in a courtroom in this small Delaware town.
NEWS
By Don Aucoin and Don Aucoin,BOSTON GLOBE | November 24, 1996
The sunstruck hordes staggering through Disney World might be surprised to learn of the ruthless corporate culture lurking behind Mickey and Goofy.That culture is the setting of a piece in the December Vanity Fair about the slow-motion humiliation of erstwhile Hollywood super-agent Michael Ovitz, who has struggled to stay afloat as president of Walt Disney Co.Plainly, the long knives are out for Ovitz. Just look at the number of Disney executives eager to tell co-authors Bryan Burrough and Kim Masters about Ovitz's misguided projects, petty power trips (employing half a dozen secretaries, keeping limo drivers on call even when he wasn't going anywhere)
NEWS
By Maureen Dowd | August 30, 1995
Hollywood, Calif. -- CICADA, AGAIN. Michael Ovitz is shown to Michael Eisner's table.Eisner has pre-ordered his lunch. (Halibut, nothing on it.) Ovitz orders something not on the menu. (Lemon pasta, nothing on it.) Food is a sign of weakness here. You always try to get your companion to order first, so you can order less. And you never order from the menu if you can help it.Eisner canvasses the realm. Over in the corner is a music executive affectionately known as the "Poison Dwarf." At the next table is a movie producer whose rise at a studio was thwarted when it was discovered that he had once taken a role in a porn flick when an actor failed to show up."
NEWS
By Neal Gabler | August 24, 1995
THE FOXES ARE finally in the Hollywood chicken coop, or at least one might be excused for thinking so. Sylvester Stallone signed a reported three-picture, $60 million contract at MCA/Universal shortly after his former agent, Ron Meyer, was picked to run the studio.And one can only imagine what the installation of the world's most powerful agent, Michael Ovitz, as the chief executive at Disney might portend for his old clients.After years of grumbling about Ovitz and his Creative Artist Agency's alleged high-handedness in brokering with the studios for talent, the studio chieftains seem to have surrendered by inviting Ovitz and Meyer into the system.
BUSINESS
By New York Times News Service | August 15, 1995
Surprising even the most sophisticated entertainment executives for the second time in two weeks, Walt Disney Co. announced yesterday that talent agent Michael Ovitz would become Disney's president.The move pairs Mr. Ovitz, widely considered the most powerful man in Hollywood, with Disney's chairman, Michael D. Eisner, the most powerful man in the entertainment industry.The news caught Hollywood nearly as off guard as the announcement two weeks ago that Disney would become the world's largest entertainment company by acquiring Capital Cities/ABC Inc. for $19.2 billion.
NEWS
By Maureen Dowd | August 30, 1995
Hollywood, Calif. -- CICADA, AGAIN. Michael Ovitz is shown to Michael Eisner's table.Eisner has pre-ordered his lunch. (Halibut, nothing on it.) Ovitz orders something not on the menu. (Lemon pasta, nothing on it.) Food is a sign of weakness here. You always try to get your companion to order first, so you can order less. And you never order from the menu if you can help it.Eisner canvasses the realm. Over in the corner is a music executive affectionately known as the "Poison Dwarf." At the next table is a movie producer whose rise at a studio was thwarted when it was discovered that he had once taken a role in a porn flick when an actor failed to show up."
BUSINESS
By New York Times News Service | June 6, 1995
Hollywood's most closely watched deal ended up on the cutting-room floor yesterday as negotiations for Michael Ovitz to become head of the entertainment giant MCA Inc. unexpectedly collapsed.The end of the talks scuttled plans by Seagram Co.'s president, Edgar Bronfman Jr., to give Mr. Ovitz, chairman of the Creative Artists Agency, the reins of MCA, which Seagram now controls.Mr. Ovitz, who wields enormous clout in Hollywood as the top deal maker in the movie business, had been seeking about $250 million in compensation and equity from Seagram in return for agreeing to give up his majority stake in the talent agency and run MCA, individuals involved in the negotiations said.
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