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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 (445 )
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4.2 (399 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Amazon Customer 08-19-16 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A terrific look behind the curtain"

    While too long and repetitious, the book offers great insights from major players. Inexcusable were the mispronunciation of prominent people such as John Calley and Guy McElwayne.

    4 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carlos Pacheco Toronto, Ontario 04-18-17
    Carlos Pacheco Toronto, Ontario 04-18-17 Member Since 2016

    Carlos

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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
    HELPFUL VOTES
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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
  •  
    Lazar Antonic 02-22-17 Member Since 2014
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    4
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    "Sunk cost"
    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    The story itself is interesting but it's just not packaged well. The book is compiled of a series of interviews that were minimally edited. While the author claims this to be a strength I found that the overall narrative suffered as there are only so many 'he said', 'she said' I had the patience for. I may prefer minimally edited interviews for a topic I write a PhD on but not for a book I listen for informational/entertainment purpose. Furthermore, the book is narrated by different people which was also distracting.

    All in all this is one of the few books I treated as a sunk cost and actually stopped listening.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert 02-02-17
    Robert 02-02-17
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    "Great Story, Performance Lacked"

    This is a great book if you're interested in the workings of Hollywood over the past half century or so and want to see just how much sway agents have on the business. The story itself is great, that's why I gave it 5 stars, but the performance was lacking in places.

    The author narrates the non-interview portions of the book, but seems rushed and unconcerned with clarity of his spoken words. It took away from my listening experience. The other performers were great, very clear and vocally interesting, but whoever produced their sessions would have been well served to know how to pronounce names of well known people and companies mentioned in the book, as there were at least a dozen pronunciation errors.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Morgan Toluca Lake, CA, United States 01-28-17
    Morgan Toluca Lake, CA, United States 01-28-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Annoying narration spoils content"

    Half of this narration sounds computer generated. Really spoils the flow of the story and in certain parts, ruins it completely.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Benjamin Whitehair Boulder, CO 01-24-17
    Benjamin Whitehair Boulder, CO 01-24-17 Member Since 2017

    Ben Whitehair

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    "This. Was. AMAZING."

    What a remarkable book. I couldn't stop listening--in the car, while eating, in the shower. A fascinating look at the rise of CAA. Of power, business, the entrepreneurial spirit, and human psychology. Where you're interested in entertainment, film, TV, acting, or business this is a must read/listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Gunter 12-02-16
    John Gunter 12-02-16 Member Since 2016
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    "A look behind the last 40 years of Hollywood"

    Great stories that'll have you randomly offering friends unsollicited facts like "Did you know they wanted Sylvester Stallone for Eddie Murphy's role in Beverly Hills Cop?" and "Ghostbusters 2 took so long to make because they unevenly distributed the money on Ghostbusters!"

    This will make your friends like you a lot less, but you'll still love this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mickey 11-27-16
    Mickey 11-27-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Makes you miss a non corporate Hollywood"

    Being in the industry so long you tend to forget how much fun it was in the mid to late 90's. I enjoyed this book quite a bit and recommend it to anyone who is in media today.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • petali
    11/9/16
    Overall
    Performance
    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.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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