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Powerhouse Audiobook

Powerhouse: The Untold Story of Hollywood's Creative Artists Agency

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Publisher's Summary

An astonishing - and astonishingly entertaining - behind-the-curtain history of Hollywood's transformation over the past five decades as seen through the agency at the heart of it all, from the number-one best-selling author of Live from New York and Those Guys Have All the Fun.

In 1975, five young employees of a sclerotic William Morris agency left to start their own strikingly innovative talent agency. In the years to come, Creative Artists Agency would vault from its origins in a tiny office on the last block of Beverly Hills to become the largest and most imperial, groundbreaking, and star-studded agency Hollywood has ever seen - a company whose tentacles now spread throughout the world of movies, music, television, technology, advertising, sports, and investment banking far more than previously imagined.

Powerhouse is the fascinating, no-holds-barred saga of that hot-blooded ascent. Drawing on unprecedented and exclusive access to the men and women who built and battled CAA as well as financial information never before made public, acclaimed author James Andrew Miller spins a tale of boundless ambition, ruthless egomania, ceaseless empire building, drugs, sex, greed, and personal betrayal. Powerhouse is also a story of prophetic brilliance, magnificent artistry, singular genius, entrepreneurial courage, strategic daring, foxhole brotherhood, and how one firm utterly transformed the entertainment business. Here are the real Star Wars - complete with a Death Star - told through the voices of those who were actually there. Packed with scores of stars from movies, television, music, and sports as well as a tremendously compelling cast of agents, studio executives, network chiefs, league commissioners, hedge fund managers, tech CEOs, and media tycoons, Powerhouse is itself a Hollywood blockbuster of the most spectacular sort.

©2016 James Andrew Miller (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (527 )
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4.2 (469 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Allen Patton Phoenix 11-13-17
    Allen Patton Phoenix 11-13-17 Member Since 2013
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    57
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    "A Solid oral history that does not stick the endin"

    I love me some corporate bio's, add that in with an oral history and you got a winner. The CAA book really nails this balance for the fist 18 hours then slows down a bit as the company change and moved into other things. I am not saying that the ending is boring but you go from something I care about (movies) to something I find full (sports) and a bit of the shine comes off in the last ten years of CAA.


    (AUDIBLE 20 REVIEW SWEEPSTAKES ENTRY)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anthony 10-07-17
    Anthony 10-07-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Great insider look into the entertainment industry"

    This book really goes in depth about the agency business but also scans the major trends that have happened in congruence with the rise of CAA. Kind of amazing how many people were included in the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    WPA Member 09-27-17
    WPA Member 09-27-17
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    "History by quotes"

    I am not a fan of this book's format. Telling a story completely by quotes- however impressive to construct- lost me at many times. I forgot who the quoted person was (their significance) and many times I was frustrated the contexts' illustrations were limited to the persons quoted. The author rarely intervened with a couple paragraphs rather than painting the correct context and environment to better understand each quote. While I logically knew this format protected the writer's liability and was an impressive accomplishment to weave a storyline solely by quotes, I was felt irritated that more analytical research was not included and the book was solely reliant on here-say. A better format is like Disney War by James Stewart. I will say, when I finally accepted Powerhouse's story as more of a professionally-interviewed celebrity magazine rather than a researched company biography, I enjoyed how the writer captured the lifestyle, relationships, personalities, pressures and elations of the CAA experience. Most positively, the quotes were always intriguing. I am sad I did not understand the context behind much of the quotes.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sean Wing Huntington Beach, California 09-22-17
    Sean Wing Huntington Beach, California 09-22-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Magnificent History"

    Having worked with CAA over the years, it is amazing to read the history behind such a giant, the stories that shaped its creation and the impact that is has had on the creative industry. Without a doubt, this is worth the listen.

    AUDIBLE 20 REVIEW SWEEPSTAKES ENTRY

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Doc G 08-07-17
    Doc G 08-07-17
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    "Great read. A little long especially near thre end"

    Nice story of the original founders.three recent history interested me less, and frankly I could had done without much of the current political battle stories. still enjoyed it very much.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patrick M. 07-17-17
    Patrick M. 07-17-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Solid Story, Questionable Voice Work"

    Here's the good: excellent insight into the business of Hollywood, TV and broadcast sports. You won't come away with a ton of hard business skills from this book other than be nice to people and value relationships over everything, but I found great value in the telling of CAA's early years led by their founders. In short, the origins of the CAA story is about the American Dream, friendship (or lack thereof) and hustle. I appreciated the multiple voice actors as well. The interviews are consistently candid in the first 3/4 of the book. Here's the bad: the last 3rd of the book could be chopped off. It's essentially a long form advertisement for their advisory services and sports arm. The voice acting is robotic and needs more variety. I love JAM but he is not a terribly gifted voice over actor. Oddly enough I would have appreciated more editorial commentary or 3rd party data to properly verify aspects of this story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Blessing Mpofu 06-04-17
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    "how books should be"

    A well researched and written book. Individuals views are not diluted. Giving many facets of the grand story of a Hollywood institution.

    It was inspiring getting insight of how some of the things that have shaped culture throughout generations were born, developed, packaged and delivered.

    A must read / listen!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carlos Pacheco Toronto, Ontario 04-18-17
    Carlos Pacheco Toronto, Ontario 04-18-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Openeded a new behind the scenes perspective"
    What did you like best about this story?

    The crazy world of agents was unknown to me so learning about the deal making and packaging of projects was an eye opener.


    What aspect of the narrators’s performance would you have changed?

    I'm not sure about the interview style of this book. It's the first time I've ever read a book like this and there were many times where I didn't understand who was speaking or that they're story was uninteresting.


    Any additional comments?

    Near the end of the book, when Ovitz has left I would say things got much less interesting and the stories were just boring. Also and the story of how CAA got into sports wasn't as interesting as the stories of the deals they managed. That might be just my lack of interest of the space.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    katherine 03-13-17
    katherine 03-13-17 Member Since 2014
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    "Story itself is a good one"
    What made the experience of listening to Powerhouse the most enjoyable?

    Seeing how the business changed over time --- Mavericks like Mike Ovitz changed the paradigm of talent representation and impacted how entertainment business is run.


    Would you be willing to try another one of the narrators’s performances?

    No... This author should never have narrated his own work. The book itself is terrific and interesting, but he does NOT have a clear and commanding voice. In addition, I was highly annoyed to hear certain names mispronounced! If you are going to mention an actual person's name -- make sure you know the correct pronunciation!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Holly 02-28-17
    Holly 02-28-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Fascinating story, painful narration"

    The main narrator reads like a 5th Grader reading aloud in class. even mispronounces the name of the ad agency that CAA worked with. the two character narrators we're a little better, but way overdid it. the woman sounds like she's reading a story to elementary school children. Too singsongy, and over-pronunciation of words. it really took away from the hard-hitting nature of this incredible story of extreme Darwinism.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • petali
    Hampshire
    11/9/16
    Overall
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    Story
    "Cold people"

    This is a story that left me feeling cold. About self serving people I couldn't care less about. Interesting in parts, ultimately I wish I'd never started it.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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