Jeremy Zimmer Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founding Partner, United Talent Agency
Jeremy Zimmer is chief executive officer and a founding partner of premier global talent and literary agency United Talent Agency, where he also sits on the firm’s six-member board of directors. Zimmer oversees more than 130 agents and over 350 employees in Beverly Hills and New York who collectively represent many of the world’s most widely-known, award-winning artists working in all current and emerging areas of entertainment, including motion pictures, television, digital media, video games, music, books and touring. The agency is also globally recognized in the areas of film and television packaging, film finance, corporate consulting, branding, licensing, endorsements and the representation of production talent.
Zimmer has been a key architect of the company’s rapid growth into one of the industry’s leading entertainment firms and has driven UTA to leadership positions in all of its disciplines. Zimmer has also been a primary force behind the expanding role of talent agencies in the global intersection of entertainment, media, marketing and finance.
A 35-year veteran executive in entertainment and media, Zimmer, 54, began his career at age 19 in the mailroom of the William Morris Agency. After moving to Los Angeles in 1984, he joined International Creative Management and eventually ran both the Motion Picture Literary and Motion Picture Packaging departments. In 1989, Zimmer left ICM to become a partner at the Bauer/Benedek Agency, and in 1991 he helped found United Talent Agency through a merger of Bauer/Benedek and Leading Artists Agency. He is fond of saying that the key to his success has been a very short resume.
Clients personally represented by Zimmer are leading creators in entertainment, including Andrew Adamson (SHREK; CHRONICLES OF NARNIA series), Noah Baumbach (THE SQUID AND THE WHALE), Daniel Espinosa (SAFE HOUSE), Christopher Guest (BEST IN SHOW, FAMILY TREE), Jimmy Hayward (HORTON HEARS A WHO), Anthony Hopkins, Barry Levinson (THE BAY), director-producer Frank Marshall (BOURNE FRANCHISE, SEABISCUIT), director-producer Brian Robbins (Awesomeness TV, FRED: THE MOVIE), Chris Wedge (ICE AGE, ROBOTS) and video game giant Electronic Arts.
UTA’s deep roster of clients also includes globally recognized artists such as Johnny Depp, Harrison Ford, Gwyneth Paltrow, Owen Wilson, Channing Tatum, Seth Rogen, Anthony Hopkins, Paul Rudd, Ewan McGregor, Paul Giamatti, Barbra Streisand, Paul Walker, Uma Thurman, Daniel Radcliffe, James McAvoy, Kirsten Dunst, Elizabeth Banks and Mark Ruffalo; filmmakers Wes Anderson, Judd Apatow, Brad Bird, the Coen brothers, Alfonso Cuaron, Angelina Jolie, Adam Shankman and Alan Ball; and top television creators including David Chase, Alan Ball, Tom Fontana, Ed Bernero, Steve Levitan, Darren Star, Rene Balcer, Carter Bays & Craig Thomas, Tom Forman and SallyAnn Salsano, among numerous others.
Over the past decade, Zimmer has established UTA as a pioneering force in digital media. Under his leadership, UTA became the first agency to establish a dedicated broadband representation practice with the launch of its UTAOnline division in 2006, which identified the most exciting new creative voices of the burgeoning digital era. In 2011, the agency formed the first social media division to advise clients on best practices, represent emerging technology platforms and provide consulting services to brands and causes. In 2013 UTA formed the Viterbi Start-Up Garage, an early-stage technology accelerator formed in partnership with the USC Viterbi School of Engineering and prominent venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins. UTA’s first mover status also continues in the agency’s work as an incubator, providing clients with critical advisory and financial services to build digital-based businesses in a variety of sectors. Most notably, Zimmer led the effort in incubating client Brian Robbins’ next-generation media company AwesomenessTV, now one of the fastest growing channels on YouTube, and negotiated its ground-breaking sale in spring of 2013 to DreamWorks Animation, the first ever incubation-to-exit of a media company conducted by a talent agency.
Zimmer is also involved in United Entertainment Group, the joint venture company formed with advertising veteran Jarrod Moses in 2007, which today is among the industry’s largest independent branded entertainment and integrated media firms. The New York and Los Angeles-based company provides best-in-class marketing solutions to consumer brands including Procter & Gamble, Frito-Lay, AT&T, Starbucks, Samsung, Nestle, Quaker, Williams-Sonoma, Inc., Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, Avon, Build-A-Bear, Art of Shaving, and many others.
Zimmer established UTA’s prolific Branding, Licensing & Endorsements division, which is responsible for building viable businesses around high-profile clients. Most notably, UTA helped client Gwen Stefani create the global L.A.M.B., Harajuku Lovers and Harajuku Mini lines of apparel and accessories.
In 2011, Zimmer recruited renowned brand strategist Laurence Vincent to join the agency and form a new corporate brand strategy consulting practice. The UTA Brand Studio was launched in early 2012 to provide a full complement of brand services including brand definition, brand research, design, naming and experience activation. Among the clients serviced by the UTA Brand Studio are the Elizabeth Taylor Trust and American Girl.
Zimmer created and oversees UTA’s highly regarded Agent Trainee Program which is responsible for producing numerous partner level agents at UTA and high-level executives throughout the industry. As the executive most responsible for inducting young executive talent to UTA, Zimmer is a mentor to numerous young men and women in the entertainment industry.
Zimmer is a frequent speaker on the role of Hollywood in business and culture, and he has taught on the graduate level of UCLA’s Producers Program. A noted collector of contemporary art and photography, Zimmer sits on the Board of Overseers for the Hammer Museum.
Zimmer is married and the father of four daughters. He lives in Los Angeles.