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Longtime Literary Agent Lew Weitzman Dead at 75

A memorial for the founder of the Preferred Artists Agency will take place July 24

A memorial service for longtime literary agent Lew Weitzman has been set for 2 p.m. July 24 at the DGA.

Weitzman died in Los Angeles on June 30 after being treated for brain cancer at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. He was 75.

Weitzman, a UCLA graduate, got early training in the business at MCA, then the largest talent agency in the world, after military service. Moving to William Morris Agency in 1966, he specialized in writers and producers before forming his own agency, Lew Weitzman and Associates, in 1973.

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Weitzman supervised the company for a decade before selling it to the Sy Fisher Company, a division of Taft Entertainment. He became head of the agency unit, and remained there until 1988, when the Writers Guild strike caused a stoppage of writers’ work in TV and film. It was then that Weitzman formed Preferred Artists Agency, which still exists to this day.

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His clients included "Dallas" producer Leonard Katzman, "Smokey and the Bandit" and "The Green Berets" writer James Lee Barrett, western writer Jim Byrnes, John McGreevey, John Baskin and Roger Shullman, Jay Moriarity & Mike Milligan, Ann Beckett, Paul Cooper, and Dick Christie.

Outside of his long career in the industry, Weitzman was an active member of the Valleyaires, a men’s chorus in the Valley, as well as a tenor in several barbershop quartets for the last 20 years.

Weitzman, was born on Oct. 30, 1937, is survived by his wife of 48 years, Dale, and his sons, Matt and Paul, who are also active in the entertainment industry themselves. Matt co-created "American Dad" with Seth MacFarlane and Mike Barker. Paul is an agent. Weitzman is also survived by five grandsons.


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