EXCLUSIVE: Resolution, the talent agency founded by former ICM chief Jeff Berg early last year, continues to change form. The agency has confirmed the exit of Jeff Franklin, the music agent who was COO and a key partner when Berg jumped ship and formed the new agency with backing from Jahm Najafi, a former Salomon Bros banker active in real estate and private equity with investments in diverse companies and brands. I’m told that Franklin shed the COO stripes a year ago. The agency would not comment beyond that.
I had heard that Franklin would be exiting for months, but it was difficult to get clarity until now. Resolution has found it a challenge to form an agency in the current climate where CAA, WME, UTA, ICM and Paradigm are all well established. Berg left ICM Partners somewhat acrimoniously when the partners of that agency discovered that he was setting up shop elsewhere. Berg then made some high profile hires, paying big bucks to land Adam Kanter and Martin Spencer from CAA, but they had trouble keeping clients like Doug Liman and Peter Segal. When those agents were asked to take pay cuts despite having contracts, they declined and exited. Both of them have resurfaced at Paradigm. Some at the agency felt that Resolution would be better suited not chasing star agents, but growing organically. I’ve heard that the lavish headquarters on 1801 Century Park East have been downsized a bit — the agency took the whole 23rd floor, and that they would absorb the growing pains that any percentery would experience trying to launch in this environment.