I hear that Chris Hart, whose contract was coming up at ICM and signaled he wanted to leave, is UTA-bound. Meanwhile, I’ve learned about an interesting tiff between UTA and WME — or, more specifically, Jim Berkus and Robert Newman. Napoleon Dynamite writer/director Jared Hess and his screenwriting partner/wife Jerusha Hess have discharged WME’s Robert Newman after a 6-month stint and returned to their first agent, UTA chairman Jim Berkus. It seems Berkus originally signed the duo out of Sundance in 2004 when Napoleon Dynamite made its debut to become an indie phenom and cult hit. Berkus then helped to package their follow-up Nacho Libre that Jared directed from a script by both Hesses and Mike White. Berkus also recently got his longtime client Wes Anderson back from WME’s Newman after a brief stint. I love the smell of napalm in Hollywood.
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