UPDATE: The Gersh Agency has just confirmed Deadline’s report that it has acquired Hohman, Maybank, Lieb and issued a press release that follows the original story break.
EXCLUSIVE: The Gersh Agency is putting the finishing touches on a major deal that will give a real shot in the arm to its literary department. Gersh is acquiring Hohman, Maybank, Lieb, the well-respected boutique literary agency. Founders Bob Hohman, Bayard Maybank and Devra Lieb will become partners and will bolster a Gersh lit department that recently lost deal makers Sara Self and David Kopple.
I’m told Hohman Maybank Lieb will bring such writers as Saving Private Ryan scribe Robert Rodat, Valentine’s Day scribe Katherine Fugate, Finding Nemo scribe Dave Reynolds, Welcome to the Rileys scribe Ken Hixon, Cheaper By the Dozen scribe Sam Harper, The Great and Powerful Oz scribe Mitchell Kapner, Source Code‘s Ben Ripley, Londongrad‘s David Scarpa, Daddy Day Care‘s Geoff Rodkey, Pretty Little Liars’ Marlene King, Man & Wife scribe Alan McElroy, Never Forget scribe Chris Parker, Adaline scribe Allison Burnett, and Martian Child‘s Seth Bass & Jonathan Tolins.
The trio will run the literary department with Gersh partner Abram Nalibotsky. I’m still checking on whether other agents from HML are coming aboard. The deal is being made David and Bob Gersh and Leslie Siebert, who is managing partner.
Hohman, Maybank and Lieb formed their agency in 1996 after leaving Triad when that agency merged with WMA. I’m told that while they will become core players at Gersh, this is not an outright acquisition of their agency. That means all the receivables from past HML deals stay with those agents. It seems like a win-win for both shops. For HML, It has never been harder to survive as an indie lit agency. There was a time when shops like HML and their clients were left alone by the major agencies, but recently HML weathered the loss of prolific scribe Aline Brosh McKenna to CAA. Gersh gets an infusion of respected lit agents who know what they are doing. They fill the void left by Kopple, who went to CAA with Spider-Man director Marc Webb, and Self, who left with client Diablo Cody, the Oscar-winning Juno scribe.
Gersh recently bolstered its independent film financing and distribution division, promoting Jay Cohen to partner status (he was being courted by other agencies) and adding producer Jennifer Dana to run it with him.
Here’s Gersh’s announcement:
Talent and literary agency, Gersh has today announced that literary agents Bob Hohman, Bayard Maybank and Devra Lieb will join the Gersh literary department as Partners bringing with them their client roster which includes an extensive list of award-winning and respected writers.
Hohman Maybank Lieb was established in 1996 and together the agents have many years of combined experience. Effective immediately the agents will transition their business to the Gersh office and integrate their clients. Hohman, Maybank and Lieb will jointly lead the Gersh literary department with Partner Abram Nalibotsky.
“Bob, Bayard, and Devra are some of the finest and most respected agents in the literary field. They are a rarefied group with a magnificent client roster and will be a fantastic addition to the agency” said Co-Presidents Bob Gersh, David Gersh and Managing Partner Leslie Siebert. Further adding “This deal underscores our continued commitment to selectively expanding the agency so we can continue to provide the highest quality of service to our clients.”
Bob Hohman said “Devra, Bayard and I are thrilled to be joining Gersh. It’s the perfect fit for us . We’ve been admirers of David, Bob and Leslie and their colleagues for many years and feel privileged to be joining their agency. We look forward to continuing to provide wonderful opportunities for our clients in film and television as we move forward in this new venture.”
Today’s announcement brings numerous benefits to both parties, providing many exciting new opportunities for cross-agency client collaboration in both the TV and film industries.
A partial list of clients represented by HML includes: Robert Rodat (“Saving Private Ryan”), Katherine Fugate (“Valentine’s Day”), Allison Burnett (“Adaline”), Dave Reynolds (“Finding Nemo”), Ken Hixon (“Welcome To The Riley’s”), Sam Harper (“Cheaper By The Dozen”), Marlene King (“Pretty Little Liars”), Mitchell Kapner (“Oz The Great and Powerful”), Seth Bass & Jonathan Tolins (“Martian Child”), Alan McElroy (“Man & Wife”), Chris Parker (“Never Forget”), Ben Ripley (“Source Code”), Geoff Rodkey (“Daddy Day Care,” RV”), David Scarpa (“Londongrad”).
This announcement comes on the heels of Gersh announcing a strategic partnership with veteran music business The Agency Group. The partnership allows multi-hyphenate clients from each agency to generate additional revenues in new areas that can accessed through the partnership, primarily centered on live tour booking, personal appearances, television, theatre and motion picture. Only a month earlier, Gersh also expanded its Film Financing & Distribution division with the addition of veteran producer Jennifer Dana and the promotion of Jay Cohen to Partner.
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