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No secrets here
Kovert Creative, the publicity firm launched by PMK*BNC veterans Lewis Kay and Joseph Assad last year, has signed:
· Marlon Wayans, who returns to network television as executive producer and star of upcoming NBC sitcom Marlon, which premieres Aug. 16. Wayans also will star in the Netflix comedy feature Naked, opposite Regina Hall.
· Tiffany Haddish, who played tough gang member Hi-C in Keegan-Michael Key’s and Jordan Peele’s Keanu, will star alongside Hall, Queen Latifah and Jada Pinkett Smith in Universal’s upcoming Girls Trip, which opens July 21. She also co-stars on NBC’s The Carmichael Show.
· Michelle Wolf, a writer on The Daily Show, whose memorable on-air segments have included an emotional monologue following Hillary Clinton’s presidential election defeat and a takedown of Ivanka Trump’s brand of feminism, will tape her first stand-up special, for HBO, this summer.
Love those kids
Stranger Things’ Caleb McLaughlin has signed with Platform Public Relations. The young actor, who plays Lucas, and the rest of the ensemble will return to Netflix when the second season airs later this year.
WME agent Dana Harris has joined CAA. Although she now will be working with motion picture talent, at WME, where she spent the past six years, she worked with literary clients, including writers E. Max Frye (Foxcatcher), Craig Shilowich (Christine) and Jon Ronson (Okja) and directors Otto Bathurst (Robin Hood), Sarah Adina Smith (Buster’s Mal Heart) and Mark Mylod (Game of Thrones). She was promoted to agent in 2014.
Music City move
UTA has hired Nick Barnes as a digital strategy agent in its Nashville office. Barnes spent the past three years at global management firm Q Prime, where he served as country star Eric Church’s director of fan engagement and digital. Prior to that, he spent three years as digital marketing manager at Sony Music Nashville and Arista Records.
“As the agency continues to expand our suite of services across all areas, Nick will help bring our digital strategy practice to the next level, and give us true digital boots on the ground in Nashville,” UTA Nashville co-head Nick Meinema said in a statement. “His expertise at the intersection of music, digital and marketing will serve as an invaluable tool as we continue to create new and innovative opportunities for our clients.”
Barnes, who graduated from Samford University in Birmingham, Ala., with a BA in music, will focus on developing and executing digital and direct-to-audience strategies for the agency’s full roster, particularly its music and Nashville-based clients.
“I’m elated to join the team at UTA and enter into a new chapter in my career,” Barnes said in a statement. “UTA’s commitment to digital growth is forward-thinking and progressive. With the constantly changing digital landscape, I look forward to keeping the company ahead of the curve and using my experience to attract new talent in Nashville and beyond.”
More musical agency news
Paradigm has formed a joint venture with Ron Burkle’s investment firm Yucaipa and Europe’s X-ray Touring. This latest partnership follows the agency’s prior successful pairings with music firms, including its continuing partnership with London’s CODA Agency and its previous partnerships with AM Only and The Windish Agency, which it acquired in January.
“We’re delighted to find in Paradigm partners that share our ethos of complete commitment to the artist, providing them with every possible advantage in all aspects of their career,” the X-ray directors said in a joint statement. “We look forward with great enthusiasm to collaborating with Paradigm and Yucaipa on this next stage of X-ray’s global development.”
Artists that X-ray represents in international touring includes Coldplay, Chance the Rapper, Robbie Williams, Eminem, Blur, Stereophonics, Volbeat, Gorillaz, Pixies, Green Day and Linkin Park.
“X-ray has a fantastic worldwide roster,” Paradigm chairman and CEO Sam Gores said in a statement. “We’ve wanted this partnership for quite some time and are thrilled to grow our company while working in partnership with Steve Strange, Ian Huffam, Scott Thomas, Martin Horne and Jeff Craft to offer more creative and business opportunities to X-ray’s artists.”
Added Burkle in a statement, “We are thrilled to be in business with Paradigm in the U.K. The synergies with X-ray, ITG and CODA creates Europe’s most comprehensive agency offering as well as a fund to invest in live entertainment assets in the U.K. and Europe.”
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Star Trek: Strange New Worlds