Things are bad when you let Lawrence Schiller into your life. Just ask O.J. Simpson. Now Annie Leibovitz has Schiller hanging around, lending a hand marketing her “master set” of prints. The New York Times‘s Allen Salkin explains:
Through James Danziger, a gallery owner who had represented Ms. Leibovitz from 1990 to 2000, she has begun selling a limited-edition “Master Set” of 157 of her photographs. Only 10 sets are planned, and they are being offered for up to $3.5 million a set, although the prepublication price is lower, said Mr. Danziger in a phone interview from Miami. […] Lawrence Schiller, a writer, publisher and television producer who helped produce Ms. Leibovitz’s first book of photography in 1974, is also helping to market the master sets. He said three had already been sold. Mr. Schiller would not reveal what buyers paid, but said some of the prepublication sets were being offered for $2.5 million. Mr. Schiller said he had been helping Ms. Leibovitz take stock of her archives to determine how to use it to pay her debts, but in a measured fashion that would not suggest desperation.
Worse than having Schiller involved is the financial advice Leibovitz is receiving. The resolution of her deadline with Art Capital seems to have come at great cost by adding more debt to the already substantial pile:
Three days after the September deadline, a joint statement from Ms. Leibovitz and Art Capital announced that the suit had been settled, the debt restructured and the deadline to pay it back extended.
As part of that deal, Ms. Leibovitz agreed to pay Art Capital an undisclosed sum to regain control of her homes and the copyrights to her work, which she had previously ceded to the lender for an increase in the loan amount. That caused Ms. Leibovitz’s debt to Art Capital to grow to about $30 million, said a financial industry source who has consulted with Ms. Leibovitz about her debt, and who spoke anonymously because of a confidentiality agreement. Since then Ms. Leibovitz has been trying to leverage her photographic archive to pay off the debt.
Annie Liebovitz Takes Steps to Regain Financial Footing (New York Times)