THR's Power Business Managers 2013
Since launching his firm in 1985, Bell has attracted to his roster a mix of older newscasters like Bill O'Reilly and younger performers. But the New York-based business manager notes that the economic climate has changed for reps like him. "The paydays of younger talent aren't what they used to be," he says, "because studios can get away with it. There are so many actresses out there who are interchangeable."
As such, Bell has been expanding his clientele. He recently turned his attention to below-the-line talent: Carmen Cuba, who won an Emmy for casting HBO's Behind the Candelabra, was a recent signing. He also has made moves on the athlete front, scoring the San Diego Chargers' D.J. Fluker, selected in the first round of 2013's draft.
For all his clients, Bell preaches the benefits of investing over spending and warns: "Never expect a hobby to be a moneymaker. If you are a polo player, your horses will never increase in value; a boat depreciates. One exception I've seen is art, but after commissions, it is rare that an armchair collector sees a profit."