- November 21, 2019
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
Power Lunch w/ Bud Moss
BHWC 1700 Chevy Chase Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Thursday, November 21; 11:30am
Members & Guests RSVP $65
Chair: Mumsey Nemiroff – [email protected]
Budd Burton Moss (Buddy as he was known growing up) was born at Hollywood Children’s Hospital in the shadows of Hollywood Blvd.
Budd attended grammar schools in Venice and West Los Angeles through the early 40’s including Emerson Jr. High school and Louis Pasteur Jr. High school and Hamilton High school in Culver City, California, graduating in 1948.
During his early days in high school he worked as a bus boy at Fox studios in the famed Café de Paris Restaurante on the lot where he first met some of his famous movie stars, whom later he found himself working as their agent: including Rita Hayworth and Don Ameche (to mention a few of the stars of the 40’s).
After school when he was at Hamilton High, he would go to MGM studios where he worked in the 76 gas station, servicing the cars of such greats as June Allyson, Cyd Charisse, Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds, Esther Williams, Van Johnson, Judy Garland, and Clark Gable. He got to know all of these greats with his famed uncle, Sam Zimbalist (his uncle) who produced many of MGM’s greatest Oscar winning films including “Boom Town” with Gable and Tracy, “Tortilla Flats,” the John Steinbeck classic with John Garfield, Hedy Larmar, and Spencer Tracy, “Mogombo” with Gable, Grace Kelly and Ava Gardner, ’30 Seconds Over Tokyo” With Spencer Tracy and Van Johnson, ‘Quo Vadis’ and finally ‘Ben Hur’ winner of 12 Oscars. To date no film has received as many Oscars. His father, Louis B. Moss was a well known film editor at Fox through the war and then went to Universal Studios where he edited many films for the armed forces. In 1948, Budd went to Los Angeles City and State College where he was a theater arts major working with other young actors including James Colburn, Joel Grey, Hugh O’Brien and Robert Vaughn, whom he represented years later at General Artists Corp.
During the Korean War (1952-1954), he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and was stationed at Parks AF base outside of Oakland, California, where he and Col. Abe Parker headed up a special service unit to entertain the troops returning from Korea. He assisted the medical unit in taking the servicemen that were recuperating for the war into San Francisco allowing them to see plays at the Curran and Geary Theater along with the San Francisco Opera Company for two years. During this time he also put together an actor’s workshop along with Mills College, an all girl’s school bringing some 20 Air Force men into the theater dept., giving them the opportunity during their off time from the base to learn about working in the theater.
After the war was over, Budd Moss went to New York City at the invitation of the great theater director, Margo Jones, and got his first taste of the American theater. At one time, Margo Jones had invited Moss to join her theater group in Dallas but Moss elected to return to Hollywood where in 1956, while working with his family that had gone into the restaurant business met film actress Ruth Roman, star of “The Champion” with Kirk Douglas, “Dallas” with Gary Cooper, and “Blowing Wild” with Anthony Quinn and Gary Cooper.
It was during 1956 that Ruth Roman was returning from Europe after filming in Paris that she was aboard the Italian luxury Liner, The Andrea Doria when it collided with the Swedish freighter, The Stockholm off the coast of New England in dense fog. That brought Budd to New York City to find Ms. Roman and her son Richard. While recovering from this near fatal accident, they decided to get married and return to Europe later that year.
In October of 1956 they boarded a nine passenger Norwegian freighter in the port of Long Beach, California, planning to be married at sea by the ship’s captain but Norweigian Laws, a minister had to be aboard so they arranged to be married in San Cristobol as the ship went thru the Panama Canal. As the freighter was heading for Panama, Ruth received a cable from an old friend, Anna Henriquez, having heard thru the steamship line that she was passing thru and offered to host their marriage at the Panama Hilton Hotel. She accepted, and a lovely wedding was arranged over night with the Vice President of Panama, Carlos Arries as the honored guest and Fernando Eleta, the Treasurer of Panama as Budd’s Best Man. After a brief 10 hours in Panama, the newly weds headed for the other end of the canal in the Vice President’s Limo where they met the freighter and sailed off into the North Atlantic towards Antwerp, Belgium, along with their Simca station-wagon, which they brought with them and drove it into Paris at the peak of the Oil Embargo in the Suez Canal crisis in Oct/Nov. of 1956.
The Moss family had planned on staying only two or three months, but Ruth was signed to do three films in Spain and France and stayed for almost two years. It was there that Budd learned the agency business from one of Spain’s most noted agents, Luis Sanz. Ruth was contacted by her London agent, John Redway to go to Cannes, France where she will join Paul Gretz, Curt Jergens and a young English actor, Richard Burton to star in a Columbia feature, ‘Bitter Victory’ a World War II story set in Libya.
In late 1958, after returning from Spain to California, New York Agent Martin Baum contacted Ruth Roman to asked if she would be interested in coming to New York City to meet with him and several Broadway producers that wanted her to audition for “The Disenchanted”, “The Gazebo”, and the National Tour of the big Broadway success “Two for the Seesaw” which starred Anne Bancroft and Henry Fonda, a two character play. She auditioned for all three and had her choice to do any of the three plays. After Budd and Ruth met again with Martin Baum, it was decided that for her and her career, she would elect to do “Seesaw” for a year on tour. Baum asked Budd what his plans were as Ms. Roman’s manager and suggested he think about becoming an agent and working with him at Baum-Newborn Agency in 1959 when the tour started. Baum was planning to merge with General Artist Corp (GAC), later that year to open a new Motion Picture and T.V. Division both in Los Angeles and New York.
During the 1959-1960 period, while Ruth Roman toured with ‘Two for the Seesaw’ in Chicago, Detroit, Indianapolis and other key cities, Moss would fly into Los Angles to join Martin Baum and take him to the various Studios as he set up his new division at GAC.
Baum had a great belief in his ability to bring to Hollywood a group of New York actors and actresses and make them the new stars of the 60’s and 70’s. Baum was responsible for bringing to Hollywood the following actors/actresses from 1960 through the 70’s and 80’s Cliff Robertson (Oscar winner for “Charlie” Sidney Poitier (Oscar Winner for “Lilly of the Fields”) Dina Merrill, Ann Margaret, Ryan O’Neil, Ina Balin, Jessica Walters, Brenda Vaccarro, Caroll O’Connor and Martin Landau.
Budd Moss along with a new wave of agents, including Jerry Steiner, Steve Yates, Bill Belasco, Ted Witzer, Jack Gilardi, Max Arnow (Former Colombia Casting Director), in combination with the great actors now at GAC, turned General Artists Corp. into one of the top agencies in Hollywood along side of the William Morris Agency and M.C.A.
Moss found himself working with a new wing of GAC in the early days of TV. He placed not only Larry Hagman but also Barbara Eden in the long running series “I Dream of Jeannie”, newcomer, Elizabeth Montgomery (daughter of noted film star, Robert Montgomery) was his next series deal with “Bewitched”. He made Mia Farrow’s original deal for “Payton Place” at 20th Century Fox, and his longtime college friend, Robert Vaughn in the MGM series, “Man from U.N.C.L.E.”. In 1965 through the late 60’s Moss was in charge of the T.V. Department, and stayed there until 1969 when he decided it was time to leave GAC and open the Burton Moss Agency.
At the Burton Moss agency, Mr. Moss was responsible for placing Dyan Cannon in “Bob, Carol, Ted and Alice” for which she received an Oscar nomination, Sally Kellerman in “M.A.S.H.”, which she also received an Oscar nomination. He discovered Carrie Snodgress and placed her in “Diary of a Madhouse Wife” with Richard Benjamin (a former client at GAC) for which she also received an Oscar nomination. He put Tom Bosley in “Happy Days” (11 years), “Murder She Wrote” (for 3 years) and “Father Dowling” (for 3 years). He discovered John James and placed him in “Dynasty” and “The Colby”, Carol Lawrence in “General Hospital” Hunter Tylo in “The Bold and Beautiful”, Norman Fell in “Our Old School” (Fred Silverman prod.) and “For the Boys” with Better Midler and James Caan.
Over the following years he worked with the noted sports attorney Bob Woolf and represented numerous sports figures including: Joe Theismann, Dexter Manley, Jimmy Craig (Olympic hockey hero) Larry Bird, Doug Flutie, Gene Washington and Jim Plunkett.
In 1994, the Burton Moss Agency merged with Shapiro-Lichtman Agency, one of the top independent literary agencies in the industry, and headed up their talent department, bringing with him his clients including famed MGM stars, June Allyson and Cyd Charisse. He also represented Oscar winner Karl Malden (Street Car Named Desire) and former president of the M.P.A.A. Jack Valenti and his novel “Protect and Defend” which is currently in development with Lorenzo Di Bonaventura Productions at Paramount Studios.
Over the years, Mr. Moss arranged for Cyd Charisse to make her Broadway debut in the Tommy Tunes production of “Grand Hotel” affording Ms. Charisse to create the role that Greta Garbo did in the dramatic film of the same name. “Grand Hotel” gave her fans the opportunity to see Cyd Charisse in ballet shoes once again. In November of 2006, Cyd Charisse received the National Endowment of the Arts Medal for her contribution to the world of Films and Dance from President George W. Bush at the White House. He also brought Tony winner, Tom Bosley back to the Broadway stage in the original Disney production of “Beauty and the Beast” playing ‘Maurice’ the loving father to ‘Belle’ for several years and then brought Mr. Bosley back once again for “Cabaret” at Studio 54 for the Roundabout Theater.
Currently Burton Moss has left Shapiro-Lichtman having closed their doors in October of 2006 and is heading up the new Burton Moss Management. He is actively involved in the development of “Good Sports?” a half hour comedy series to be produced by George Schlatter Prod. and Larry King’s prod. company Brooklyn Boys Prod. to be hosted by Larry King, starring Penny Marshall and Garry Marshall.