Eddie Michaels, the Hollywood publicist whose longtime clients included Noah Wyle and Illumination Entertainment, died on Thursday [8] in Los Angeles after a long battle with brain cancer. He was 49.

Michaels got his first taste of the PR world as an intern in the early 1980s and landed his first job working for the man who would become his mentor, Joe Sutton of Freeman & Sutton.

The young executive went on to establish Eddie Michaels & Associates in 1992 and rebranded the company as Insignia in late 2004. Most recently he served at Beck Media & Marketing after that company acquired Insignia.

Over the course of his career as his reputation and network of influence grew, Michaels assembled a loyal client roster that included Anjelica Huston, Drew Barrymore, Mary Steenburgen, Dougray Scott, Lou Diamond Phillips and Jeremy Piven.

Michaels, a devoted LA Lakers fan whose dedication, charm and humour won him many friends in the industry, played an instrumental role in guiding the growth of Chris Meledandri’s animation powerhouse Illumination Entertainment and was the strategic vision behind the rebranding of high-profile organisations such as Humanitas.

He is survived by his wife Lorin, daughter Dylan, nine, and son Matthew, seven.

A memorial will take place at 2pm on Sunday [11] at Mount Sinai Memorial Park in Los Angeles.