William Meiklejohn ,was a famous Hollywood talent agent and scout in the 1920s through the 1940s. He had his own talent agency called the William Meiklejohn Agency that he sold to MCA in May of 1939. At the time of the sale, his agency had over 100 actors and writers like Hattie McDaniel and Dorothy Parker. He was famous for his self-avowed ?seventh sense? to discover and promote stars such as Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland, Lucille Ball, and in 1937, a young sportscaster in Des Moines, Iowa named Ronald Reagan.
Meiklejohn began his career in 1921 in his native Los Angeles as a booking agent for 80 different vaudeville acts. In 1939 he sold his agency to the Music Corporation of America as it opened in Hollywood and joined them as vice-president in charge of setting up their motion picture division. In 1940, he was loaned to Paramount for two weeks and ended up staying for 20 years as head of talent and casting, and it was at Paramount that he developed his reputation for finding talent. In 1960, he left the studio and once again became an independent agent for the likes of Nat King Cole, Pat O’Brien, and his close friend Ronald Reagan.
Meiklejohn died, aged 78, on April 26, 1981 in Burbank, California from undisclosed causes.
Hollywood Walk of Fame