Opening soon on Broadway! The failed business relationship between Disney CEO Michael Eisner and onetime superagent Michael Ovitz is being restaged as a Times Square rivalry.
Ovitz, formerly Disney's No. 2 man, has accepted an offer to take control of Livent Inc., the ambitious theatrical company that produced the Broadway musical "Ragtime," the company announced Monday.Livent co-founder Garth Drabinsky will step aside as chairman as Ovitz, who left the Walt Disney Co. after 14 months work and a severance package worth up to $130 million, becomes a major shareholder.
The move puts Ovitz in direct competition with his former boss and Disney - one of Livent's star shows, "Ragtime," is playing across 42nd Street from Disney's New Amsterdam Theatre where "The Lion King" is playing.
Livent, based in Toronto, owns a network of five theaters.
Ovitz will invest $20 million in Livent, giving him a seat on the board and a 12 percent stake in the company. He left Disney in December 1996.