A manís dream can only expand as wide as heís willing to open his wallet.

-Armand Cognoscenti



Some people still recognize Armand Cognoscenti as 'Li'l Herman Schnuberfel' from his days as a child actor in Vaudeville. His mother's dream from the day she arrived in America from the Old Country was that her son would grow up to be a matinee idol.

Armand: Once she was institutionalized, my dad, who was very conservative, put me right to work in his casino business. I was booking showgirls and comediennes by the time I was eleven years old.
Li'l Herman Schnuberel

Aphrodite (Old Time Showgirl): He was just the ugliest little thing. Skinny with beady little eyes and a drool bubble on his mouth.

Did he ever get over that Tourettes thing?

I go noplace - and I mean noplace - but Cognoscenti Inc. For all my True Rights stories.

-Zach Jeffstone, Producer

At 15 he was framed by the Reno police and spent a year and a half in juvie prison for allegedly running a drug ring.

Armand: They had it in for me from the get go because I made more money in a day than they'd make in a year. That's when I realized I had to hightail it to Hollywood.

The very day that he was released, he took a Greyhound to Los Angeles.

Armand laughing it up with famous client.
Armand: It was the 60s then. Free love and all that shit. I crashed on couches for the first six months. It was a wild party back then. I could tell you stories.

Armand got a job working in the mail room of ICA, one of the big 5 agencies.

He was steadily promoted and eventually found himself in the catbird seat as one of the top agents.

Armand: The whole thing of me having a cocaine problem was just a very convenient way for the new ICA agents to turn me out to pasture. It was absolutely 100% bullshit. If I read again that my career went up my nose, I'm going to go after somebody. All the crap that's been written about me, it's just pure fiction.

Armand formed his own small agency with a very selective client list. Long known for his representation of the illustrious Thad Whitney, Armand Cognoscenti has branched into the area of True Rights acquisition.

Armand: I invented the whole "One - Two - Punch" approach to rights acquisitions.

The idea is to hit active locations - crime scenes, places where natural disasters have struck - and we videotape the aftermath. That's punch one.

Armand getting down to business with Drew and Eliane.

At the same time - and this is punch two - we get rights, and I mean signed contracts, from the subjects or participants. And those True Rights become instant product. The public's appetite for this kind of stuff is insatiable.

We can sell the video footage over here in this market while we sell the actual rights to dramatize, over there in that market.

We're talking t.v. shows, movies of the week, books, news footage, the list is unending. And I knew that Drew and Elaine were the hunters who would go out there and come home with dinner. Elaine's got the eye of the tiger. Drew's got the eye of the artist. Did I already mention that he graduated from Julliard?

Reynolds Portman contacted me asking to use Thad Whitney in a short film he was shooting on video. Of course I don't let Thad do projects like that, but I saw that Reynolds and his partner Ariaga Prada were hungry and looking for an in. And they owned their own video equipment. The four of them make an absolutely unstoppable team. I can really put people together.

The studios ought to be calling me to ask me about packaging projects. I could teach them how to run a goddamned business.


EMAIL: truerights@aol.com