Richard Weitz and Christian Muirhead have been upped to co-chairmen of Endeavor’s WME talent agency, succeeding Lloyd Braun who will step down as chairman at the end of 2022 when his contract is up, per Deadline. Both are agency veterans, having come from the two companies that formed WME, Endeavor (Weitz) and WMA (Muirhead), and also come from different backgrounds, agenting and corporate communications, respectively. Ari Greenburg remains WME president and will now report to Weitz and Muirhead.
“I would like to thank Lloyd for his leadership over these past three years, navigating WME through the pandemic and setting the agency on course for its best financial year on record,” said Mark Shapiro, President, Endeavor. “Lloyd has left an indelible mark on WME and laid a strong foundation for the future.”
Former ABC Entertainment Television Group chairman Braun was a rare outsider brought into WME’s top ranks in late 2019 as chairman. He led what was then Endeavor’s Client Group through the parent company’s IPO and WME’s standoff with the WGA over packaging and affiliated production. The company has since brought the other main representation businesses under the WME umbrella with the formation of WME Sports and, just recently, the WME Fashion division.
“The appointment of Richard and Christian marks a truly transformative day for WME, which continues to be the inspirational core of Endeavor,” Shapiro said. “I’ve seen first-hand their innate ability to lead, to build meaningful relationships, and to leverage the broader Endeavor network in service to our clients’ aspirations. Coupled with their deep understanding of the entertainment landscape, I can say with certainty that there are no better or more complementary individuals to now lead the agency.”
Weitz, a WME Partner and leader within its scripted television department, represents a wide array of actors, comedians, musicians, writers, producers, and directors. He first joined the Endeavor talent agency (which would evolve into the current-day WME) in 1997. He was promoted to Partner in 2002 when he was also named head of the agency’s television packaging department. Prior to Endeavor, Weitz spent time at InterTalent Agency and ICM where he met Ariel Emanuel and Rick Rosen with whom he would play a critical role in shaping Endeavor in its early years. An active philanthropist, Weitz created a fundraising platform, ‘RWQuarantunes,’ which would go on to raise more than $35 million over two years for Covid-19 related causes and many other health and social justice organizations in need.
“WME is home to me, and I’m thrilled to carry on its century-long history and help set the course for its next 100 years,” Weitz said. “I’ve had the privilege of working with some of the most talented artists, agents, and industry executives for over 25 years. I’m humbled to have this incredible opportunity to expand on those relationships and introduce new ones, while working with Ari Greenburg, [COO] Dan Limerick, and the entire management team to create further value for our clients.”
Muirhead, meanwhile, has been with the company for 18 years and has served as Endeavor’s Chief Communications Officer (CCO) since 2014. He first joined the William Morris Agency in 2004 and was named its communications lead in 2008. Following its merger with the Endeavor talent agency in 2009, Muirhead became WME’s Head of Communications and was instrumental in the integration of the two agencies. Muirhead was shortly thereafter named a WME Partner. He previously worked in international publicity at Warner Bros. Pictures.
As Endeavor’s CCO, beginning with WME’s acquisition of IMG in 2014, Muirhead has orchestrated the communications strategy for more than 30 acquisitions and new business launches. He played an integral role in Endeavor’s public readiness project leading to its IPO in 2021, and has led a global communications team supporting subsidiaries including WME, UFC, and IMG, as well as groups specializing in corporate marketing and branding, events and hospitality, social media, and creative design. Additionally, Muirhead co-runs Endeavor’s government relations practice and oversees its social impact efforts. He also leads the company’s architecture team, whose remit is to leverage the collective power of the Endeavor network to unlock value for its clients and owned assets.
“Having started my journey at WME, I’ve had a front row seat to the evolution of the entertainment business and the growing influence of talent in shaping it,” said Muirhead. “I look forward to leveraging the full scale and depth of Endeavor’s network on our clients’ behalf, forging connections and creating opportunities to help them build industry-leading brands and businesses.”