Richard Abate’s Endeavor team is breaking up, as the Hollywood talent agency it has serviced in all things literary since the spring of 2007 prepares to merge with the William Morris Agency.
Mr. Abate was left to plan his next act when the merger was finalized at the end of April and it was confirmed that he wouldn’t be joining the combined company’s book operation in New York. That division will be run by longtime William Morris literary co-heads Jennifer Rudolph Walsh and Suzanne Gluck when the merger receives governmental approval.
It was unclear at the time whether the squad Mr. Abate had built up at Endeavor over the past two years would follow him wherever he goes next. But according to a source with firsthand knowledge of the situation, he is saying goodbye to literary agents Kirby Kim and Rebecca Oliver, as well as his subsidiary rights manager, Laura Bonner, all three of whom have resolved to leave their old boss and have committed to joining up with the ladies at William Morris instead. Both Mr. Kim and Ms. Bonner joined Endeavor in the last year or so. Ms. Oliver has been there since May 2007.
As for the rest of Mr. Abate’s people, it remains unclear what’s next for Shawn Coyne, who has been with Endeavor since the fall of 2007, or Trena Keating, who was the editor in chief of Dutton before Mr. Abate brought her on as an agent in the fall of 2008.
Mr. Abate’s plans, meanwhile, are anyone’s guess at this point, though he is rumored to be in the process of forming his own agency.
All those involved either declined to comment or did not return emails from The Observer.
According to our source, who will be part of the combined WME Entertainment, no one from the William Morris literary department—which includes agents Bill Clegg, Wayne Kabak, Erin Malone, Jay Mandel, and Eric Simonoff—will be leaving the company.
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