EXCLUSIVE: Ending a run as a top agent that spanned more than 30 years, Steve Rabineau is leaving WME. He will partner with Luc and Virginie Besson in the theatrical film and TV series business, under their EuropaCorp label.
Besson has been a longtime client and friend of Rabineau, and the goal will be to generate three films per year, one of which will be directed by Besson.
This comes after Besson wrapped Anna, an action thriller he wrote and directed that stars Sasha Luss as the title character, with Helen Mirren, Luke Evans and Cillian Murphy also starring. Luss was also in Besson’s last film, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. Though he is an idea machine with a long record hatching blockbuster films from The Professional to La Femme Nikita, Taken and Lucy, Valerian was a big swing that failed to catch on at the box office. Not helped by misconduct allegations — which Besson denied, and a police investigation was dismissed earlier this year — EuropaCorp has been looking for new backing and has been in negotiations with Pathé to take a majority stake.
WME Signs 'Vida' Star Melissa Barrera, Recently Cast In Warner Bros' 'In the Heights' & SPC's 'Carmen'
Rabineau, who has great relationships in Hollywood and helped build the careers of numerous writer/directors including Alfonso Cuaron, should provide a steady hand in leading the new venture under the EuropaCorp banner. Rabineau began his career in the mailroom at William-Morris, and became an early motion picture partner when Endeavor was created by a group that included current Endeavor head Ari Emanuel. Rabineau moved to ICM, and then became a partner at UTA before rejoining his former cohorts Emanuel and Patrick Whitesell at WME.
Rabineau confirmed his move and told Deadline: “It’s been an amazing adventure. I couldn’t be more proud of what Endeavor has become under Ari and Patrick. I feel so fortunate to have worked at such a great company and can’t wait for the next chapter to begin with Virginie and Luc.”
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.