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ICM's Sam Cohn Retires

NEW YORK (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Sam Cohn, a veteran agent Time Magazine once described as "the first superagent" has retired from ICM, the company he helped to found.

Cohn, aged 79, had left the board of directors in 2005 and had been working at a diminished capacity for ICM since, Variety reported.

In his heydey, Cohn was held to be the most influential talent agent in New York. He got his start with General Artists Corp in 1963, before founding ICM with Jeff Berg in 1975 along with Marvin Josephson, Freddie Fields and Sue Mengers.

Over the course of his career, Cohn repped some major figures in the performance world, including: Meryl Streep, Jackie Gleason, Woody Allen, Nora Ephron, Robert Altman, Paul Newman, Arthur Miller, Arthur Penn, songwriters Kander and Ebb, Peter Maas and E.L. Doctorow.

During his career, Cohn was known both for his tough negotiating style and his eccentricities which, according to the New Yorker, included eating paper and never returning phone calls.

Cohn also had a broad and deep influence on the careers of many major players in today's industry ICM president Jim Wiatt, who told Variety that he considered Cohn to be the most formative influence on his career.

"Sam mastered so many disciplines of the agency business: film, TV, publishing and stage," Jeff Berg told Variety. "He has an encyclopedic knowledge of classical music and American theater." – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers