It’s official. United Talent Agency just confirmed to me that Tracey Jacobs is staying. Even if Jim Berkus et al had to write her a fat check, it was a smart move. With Johnny Depp and other great clients, plus a reputation within the Industry for smarts and savvy, Jacobs is a rare superstar talent agent. I hear UTA very soon will be making more such announcements protecting its partners and agents from poaching by other tenpercenteries. The best defense is a good offense.
As I reported yesterday, Defamer.com posted an untrue story that Jacobs was heading to Endeavor with Johnny Depp and other clients in tow. I’d been knocking down this Tracey Jacobs-is-leaving rumor for nearly two weeks because no deal was in place even though her people were calling around with a price quote for her. As I said, she couldn’t leave UTA without also leaving a shitload of money behind her. Because in addition to Johnny Depp, she has two big TV stars that are integrally involved in UTA television packages: William Petersen in CSI and Vincent D’Onofrio in Law & Order: Criminal Intent. With those golden handcuffs on her wrists, no agency wanted to write that huge check. The strategy was to slow-play her so maybe she’d agree to take less money to move from UTA. But now that’s moot.