CONDE NASTY: Don’t bank on seeing Dominique Browning and Graydon Carter sharing a banquette at the Frank Gehry-designed Condé Nast cafeteria. The two editors in chief have been busy fighting over another of Gehry’s creations: the $224 million Disney Concert Hall in downtown Los Angeles due to open in October.
Carter dispatched editor at large Matt Tyrnauer and photographer Todd Eberle to do an article on the building for Vanity Fair’s September issue. But when Carter took the finished issue into a recent print order meeting and the story was billed as an exclusive, Advance chairman S.I. Newhouse had a rude awakening for him. “It’s not an exclusive,” Newhouse told Carter, according to several sources.
Browning, it turned out, had commissioned a piece of her own on the Gehry design and was planning to run it in House & Garden’s September issue.
It’s at this point the story becomes rashomon-like. Had the p.r. person for the concert hall double-dealed them and promised the story to both editors at the same time, or had Browning broken an embargo?
Either way, no one is denying that Carter was less than pleased — and that Browning didn’t back down. As House & Garden’s p.r. confirmed, Browning will still be running the story in the magazine’s September issue.
“She had not formally scheduled it until she saw the photos. It was scheduled to run anytime between September and November and the photos were fabulous and it fit right into the luxury issue, so it is going to run in the September issue. She said she was not aware of any exclusives,” her rep said.
Carter’s rep said: “It was our understanding that we were running in the September issue and that HG was running it in October,” and declined to comment further. — Jacob Bernstein and Greg Lindsay
SELLING SUZY: How much is Suzy Menkes worth to The International Herald Tribune? The paper’s luxury advertisers are about to find out. The IHT and its owner, The New York Times Co., will announce today that the paper is creating a special ad well, dubbed the “luxury marketplace,” which will run on page three of the paper’s Thursday editions — the first step toward festooning the IHT with upscale ads the way pages A2 and A3 of the Times are now. Burberry, Versace and Max Mara are already on board, according to the IHT.
The new ad well is the first visible piece of synergy between the two papers since the Times Co. strong-armed its former partner, The Washington Post Co., into selling its half share in the IHT to it last fall.
Interested advertisers are being urged to buy into a global ad package that bundles the premium space in both papers. And Times Co. executives aren’t even pretending there’s a straight rate card. “Those who are spending significant money in the Times will be able to leverage that and get very attractive rates,” said Stephen Dunbar Johnson, senior vice president and commercial director for the IHT. “Burberry got a remarkably attractive deal based on their investment in the Times. A first-time advertiser in the paper will probably be charged more.”
One of the reasons the Times Co. can do this first in the luxury arena is not only because the demographics are right, but because Menkes and her collections coverage is one of the IHT’s main marquee attractions — even if it generally runs on Tuesdays, while the new ad well will run Thursdays.
“We are approaching luxury brands using both products [as lures] — the Times and their coverage, and Suzy Menkes,” said Johnson. —?G.L.
JOIN US: Now that Janice Min has moved up to the number-one slot at Us Weekly, the magazine is filling in the blanks below her. Taking over as executive editor is Lori Majewski, who was formerly the magazine’s entertainment director.
Majewski’s ascension within the title means that Bonnie Fuller’s attempts to raid her former employer have missed the top of the masthead — save for fashion director Kelli Delaney, who joined the Star as creative director. “Janice and I recruited, groomed and promoted this team,” said Majewski. “We work with them day in and day out. It makes sense that they would want to stay with us.”
Meanwhile, the magazine has snared a replacement for Delaney. The new fashion director is Hayley Hill, who formerly worked with Majewski and senior editor Jeremy Helligar as the fashion editor of Teen People under Christina Ferrrari. — J.B.