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Sad news, indeed: Ed Limato, fierce protector of disgraced movie stars and legendary thrower of extravagant Oscar pre-parties, and longtime agency partner ICM have begun the painful, messy process of ending their relationship of nearly two decades. Reports DHD's Nikki Finke on the announcement of the split she promises will be "a mess":

"As part of a restructuring of ICM's motion picture department to deliver long-term growth, ICM stated today that Ed Limato is no longer co-president of the agency. Mr. Limato will continue as a motion picture agent at the company. 'ICM is restructuring the business to ensure that we develop the most innovative projects for our clients,' said Jeffrey Berg, chairman and CEO of ICM.


As part of this process, the agency is making fundamental changes throughout the business to support the next generation of leadership. Ed has been a highly regarded member of our firm for the past 19 years, and we appreciate his efforts.' Further developments with regard to the department's restructuring for growth will be announced in due course."

We suppose we'll have to wait to see exactly how nasty (it is, of course, a Friday afternoon in mid-July, and Hollywood's most powerful are currently hunting human game in Sun Valley) the divorce becomes, but someone should really check on Mel Gibson to make sure that he's OK. It's exactly this kind of destabilizing event in his family that put him back on streets of Malibu, looking to take out his anguish on the first Jewish-seeming or sugar-titted* police officer he encounters.

[*Wow, a sugartit joke! Happy Friday, everyone!]