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Jeff Berg Nearing Deal for New Talent Agency Headquarters in Century City (Exclusive)

Jeff Berg Century Park East - P 2012
1801 Century Park East. Inset: Jeff Berg

The former ICM chairman is in final negotiations for space at 1801 Century Park East -- three blocks from his old company's offices.

Former ICM chairman Jeff Berg is setting up shop not far from his old colleagues.

Berg is in final lease negotiations for Century City offices that would house his new talent agency, two knowledgeable sources tell The Hollywood Reporter. The company would be headquartered at 1801 Century Park East, a 26-story high-rise that is three blocks from his former agency's main office.

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The terms of the prospective deal and the square footage of Berg's new offices are not known, though the space certainly would be smaller than the ICM offices in the nearby Constellation Place (formerly known as MGM Tower). The 373,900-square-foot 1801 Century Park East tower is owned by commercial real estate investment trust Douglas Emmett Inc.

Berg, who ran ICM and its predecessor agency for more than three decades, has been operating out of a temporary space at 10100 Santa Monica Blvd. in Century City. He had considered leasing space at Century City's Northrop Grumman Plaza, located at 1800 and 1840 Century Park East, before turning his attention to the 1801 building, according to sources.

Berg left ICM on Oct. 26 and sources said that he was pushed out of the company before he could depart to form a new agency. Longtime agent Carol Bodie also was let go from ICM, which this year converted to a partnership and renamed itself ICM Partners. It is not known whether Bodie is involved in Berg's new venture. The proximity of his likely new digs to ICM's headquarters -- housed at 10250 Constellation Blvd. -- means Berg could regularly see his former colleagues while lunching in Century City. Berg could not be reached for comment.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter on Oct. 26, Berg said he was raising money to open a new agency to specialize in securing financing for films and advising on the sale of libraries and catalogs. Among Berg's clients at ICM were filmmakers Nick Cassavetes, Roman Polanski and Julie Taymor, but it's not clear whether those clients will join his new agency. 

“I’ve been considering a different path in the agency business and will be announcing my plans very shortly,” Berg told THR in a statement on Oct. 26. “I’ve spent my career as an owner-operator, and this is the right time for me to repeat that practice. This has been a long and successful association. I am proud of what we have achieved and the opportunities that the agency can embrace.”

The 1801 Century Park East property is 90 percent leased and is home to several law firms, including TroyGould PC, Daniels Fine Israel Schonbuch & Lebovis LLP and Cohen & Lord PC. 

Robert Zaas of Douglas Emmett, who handles leasing for 1801 Century Park East, declined to comment. 

Email: Daniel.Miller@THR.com

Twitter: @DanieNMiller