MOVIE MONEY: THE BIG 6 (Packaging Agents Make Big Commissions… My Agent is with #2)
by Dov S-S Simens on May 31, 2016
HOLLYWOOD PACKAGING AGENTS:
What is a Packaging Agent and how is it different from a Talent Agent or a Literary Agent?
Simple. Packaging Agents get 5% commission.
Talent & Literary Agents get 10-15% commission.
So why would anyone want to be a Packaging Agent?
Answer: A Talent Agent gets his/her client (West Coast: the actor… East Coast: the Thespian) a gig and then makes 10% to 15% commission.
Thus, assuming you’re an actor, and your agent gets you a deal for $200K then the agent makes $20K-$30K.
However, if your agent packages you in a movie/tv project (actors, script, budget, director, etc), that he or his agency represents all the talent, and sells the entire package to Warner Bros, or HBO, or Paramount, or TNT or Disney for the $50-$100 Million then the agent, with 5% commission gets $2.5 – $5.0 Million not $200K.
Hmm? $20K-$30K for Talent Agent at 10% or $2,500K-$5,000K for Packaging Agent.
$20,000 vs $2,500,000 AGENT COMMISSION (Pick One)
Let’s talk big commissions.
And I guarantee you that agents like big commissions.
Packaging Agents vs Literary Agents
Basically, if the Agent is part of a large agency that represents many marketable Writers, Directors & Actors then he/she can package and put together a Writer/Script ($300,000), with a Director ($1,000,000), along with 2 names, Actor #1 ($5,000,000) and Actor #2 ($1,000,000) and create a $40,000,000 Movie Package.
The major 6 studios each finance/distribute 12-15 big-budget feature film per year.
And 15-20 Movie packages alone, from just these 6 distributors combined, could easily amount to $500,000,000.
Now, if the agent was getting solely 10% he/she would get 10% of $300,000 (Writer), $1,000,000 (Director) and ($6,000,000) 2 Actors, which totals $7,300,000.
And 10% of $7,300,000 is $730,000.
This is a good commission.
This is making the agent feel very happy that he/she didn’t listen to their parents and become a Real estate Agent.
However, the entire Movie Package is a budget of $40,000,000.
And 5% of $40,000,000 is $2,000,000.
In my book $2,000,000 is a nicer check to get than $730,000… but I ain’t gonna quiver.
You now have a little insight into why certain agencies talk Packages and certain Agents talk Actors or Stars.
Welcome to Hollywood,
THE 6 HOLLYWOOD PACKAGING AGENCIES:
To be a Packaging Agency you need 100-500 agents representing 1,000-2,000 artists with at least 15% of them being Big-Name Actors, Writers or Directors.
Here are the 6 that qualify.
(ONE) CREATIVE ARTISTS AGENCY (aka: CAA)…. 424-888-2000
(TWO) WILLIAM MORRIS ENDEAVOR (aka: WME)… 310-285-9000
(THREE) INTERNATIONAL CREATIVE MANAGEMENT (aka: ICM)… 310-550-4000
(FOUR) UNITED TALENT AGENY (aka: UTA)… 310-273-6700
(FIVE) AGENCY PERFORMING ARTISTS (aka: APA)… 310-888-4200
(SIX) PARADIGM AGENCY… 310-288-8000
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