William Morris Endeavor

Location: Beverly Hills, CA

Founded: 1898

Website: http://www.wmeentertainment.com/

In 1898, William Morris opened a talent agency in New York City to represent Vaudville acts. Today the talent brokerage firm operates seven offices across the U.S., England, and China.


Notable Products

  • Talent and literary agency.
  • Clients include: Tim Burton, J.J. Abrams, Jessica Alba, Alicia Keys, Magic Johnson, Sue Monk Kidd, and Ann Brashares.

 

 

What to Expect

You don’t have to be a talent agent to work at William Morris. The enterprise employs lawyers, accountants, marketing and public relations professionals and a myriad of other related positions which all serve the goal of promoting their client list and growing the profitability of the agency. Of course, if you want to work at one of the largest and most recognized talent brokerage agencies in the business, you have to start at the bottom.

William Morris was the first entertainment agency to institute an agent-training program, which has since been duplicated by many of their competitors. The program is often referred to as the “mailroom” and is a proving ground for all those who wish to make a career in the company. The pay is low, and the expectations are stressfully high. You will rotate through several departments under the mentorship of their senior staff, learning the business as you go. You are an assistant and will start out doing menial tasks and playing gopher. If you are a stellar gopher you can move up and begin to take on added responsibility with greater prestige.

The trainees are expected to work a 50-hour workweek—at minimum. This is not cruel and unusual punishment; it is standard across many segments of the entertainment industry. For established professionals within the company, 50 hours may be a light week. The stark truth is many wash out of the program. It takes a dedicated and motivated individual to survive at William Morris. However, the training you receive is invaluable, as is the opportunity to make excellent industry contacts and hobnob with stars in film, television, music and sports.

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