UPDATE: UTA’s Michael Camacho is now also repping newly exiting CBS reality czar Ghen Maynard. (See my CBS Reality Guru Exiting Executive Ranks.)
EXCLUSIVE: That phrase, “Don’t get mad, get even” is nowhere as apropos as in Hollywood. I just heard that United Talent’s Michael Camacho took back his big deal client Mike Fleiss, The Bachelor reality kingpin, from CAA. As I reported back in February, Camacho was fired as head of CAA’s Alternative TV department over a bit of Oprah intrigue and took a lot of clients with him to UTA, gutting that unscripted division. “It’s literally the final nail in the coffin there,” one insider tells me. But Fleiss stayed behind. That’s because I’m told Richard Lovett and Bryan Lourd put on “a full court press” promising him the sun, the moon and the stars (and even film financing), none of which materialized in the months Fleiss remained at CAA. So now Fleiss — the mastermind behind The Bachelorette and High School Reunion who also has a lot of feature projects in development — is back with Camacho as is Tom Forman (Extreme Home Makeover, Kid Nation), Alison Grodner (Big Brother), Jay Blumenfeld and Tony Marsh (Newlyweds, High School Musical: Get Into The Picture), R.J. Cutler (Flip That House, Greatest American Dog). Camacho also sold Cris Abrego’s production company to Endemol for $200 million in March. But I’m told Bertram van Munster, the co-creator/exec producer and director of The Amazing Race stayed at CAA.
It was big news in Hollywood when 15-year-veteran Camacho was axed by CAA after he spent months making Oprah’s deal with Discovery Communications for her new Oprah-branded cable TV network, then secretly manuevered to run her company Harpo. CAA tried to outplace Camacho into a company or help him start up his own rather than have him compete from another tenpercentery. But Camacho’s lawyer shopped him around and UTA hired him.