EXCLUSIVE: WME is the victor in the very lucrative Dick Wolf sweepstakes. After taking a month and a half following his surprising exit from UTA to ponder his top agency options, the Law & Order creator has signed with WME. I hear he made the decision just before Thanksgiving. Wolf has strong personal ties with top TV agents at WME, CAA, and ICM, and that created some intrigue over where he would choose to go after spending 11 years at UTA. But there had been growing speculation over the past couple of weeks that he was headed to WME. Wolf will be represented by head of TV and board member Rick Rosen who is his Santa Barbara neighbor and a good friend.
Last month, a source explained Wolf’s departure from his longtime agency to Deadline’s Nikki Finke as the result of frustration over his inability to launch a successful non-Law & Order branded series as well as the fact that the mothership Law & Order couldn’t clinch a renewal that would have made it the single longest-running drama on television, an honor it now shares with Gunsmoke. Still, after two decades after the launch of his franchise, Wolf remains one of the top earners in television with a very lucrative deal at NBC Universal for his Wolf Films and a truckload of money from domestic and international TV syndication. He has three Law & Order series currently on the air: veteran Law & Order: SVU and freshman Law & Order: Los Angeles on NBC, with LOLA recently landing a full-season order, as well as Law & Order: Criminal Intent, which was picked up for a final 8-episode season on USA after lengthy and intense negotiations. Additionally, Wolf serves as an executive producer on the British Law & Order offshoot Law & Order: UK and has a blind pilot order at USA that was negotiated as part of the pickup for Criminal Intent.