SEVENTEEN SHIFTS: Last month, following the sale of Seventeen to Hearst, Cathie Black told the magazine’s weary staff that their jobs were secure and that she didn’t believe in synergy.
This story first appeared in the May 20, 2003 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
But word is already out that the promise may not extend to the magazine’s editor in chief, Sabrina Weill, who was the number two at Hearst’s Cosmogirl until being tapped for the Seventeen job in November.
While Weill met with Black in recent weeks about her vision for the magazine, she may have to do more lobbying to keep her job. According to three sources close to the teen title, a search party has been formed to look for a new editor and a partial list of candidates has already been drawn up. Among those whose names are believed to be on the short list: Mandi Norwood, who is working on a prototype of a shopping and fashion magazine for the company; Harper’s Bazaar beauty director Kerry Diamond, and amazingly enough former Seventeen editor Annemarie Iverson, who is currently working with Hearst on an undisclosed project in custom publishing.
Whoever lands the job will obviously do so only with Black’s approval, but they might want to ingratiate themselves with Cosmogirl editor Atoosa Rubinstein, who is said by sources to have Black’s ear on teen matters and whose favor Weill lost somewhere between her tenure at Cosmogirl and her defection to Primedia.
“There’s no love lost between those two,” said one person who has worked at Seventeen.
If Weill is indeed replaced, it would mark one of the shortest tenures for an editor in chief at a major consumer publication and would follow Iverson’s abbreviated tenure at the title. Weill was hired by Primedia on Nov. 1, 2002, while Iverson, her predecessor, lasted just 11 months.
A spokesperson for Hearst, asked for comment about the possible change in editorship, said via e-mail: “As you know, we are thrilled with the acquisition of Seventeen, which becomes final on May 30. As for the staff, the employees of the businesses we will acquire will then be transferred to Hearst.”
— Jacob Bernstein and Greg Lindsay
FRESH MILK: Milk Studios — New York’s premier expanse of white walls and concrete floors, and a second home to photographers like Steven Meisel and designers like Calvin Klein -— has named Tyler Copeland, a photo producer, as its in-house production director. Copeland, formerly of Art and Commerce, has spent the last few years independently producing shoots for a client list that includes Michael Thompson, Patrick Demarchelier, Solve Sundsbo, Thomas Schenk, Craig McDean and Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin. His company, Tyler Copeland Productions, has orchestrated campaigns for Valentino, Salvatore Ferragamo and Cesare Paciotti. According to Copeland, this merger is part of a greater effort by Milk to expand into a full-service production company. He intends to plan events there, direct its Web site and build the overall image of the brand. At a time when photo studios are buckling — Lighthouse Productions, for example, closed two weeks ago — Milk is also about to unveil Formula (that’s right, baby milk): three new, state-of-the-art studios in its space at 450 West 15th Street. — Rob Haskell
CONDE NAST’S TRASH: Condé Nast is teaming up with the music entertainment brand, Ministry of Sound, to launch a British lifestyle title called TRASH. The bimonthly magazine will take a global view in its coverage of popular culture, music and fashion. Rachel Newsome, the former editor of Dazed & Confused, will be editor in chief, while Paul Flynn, formerly of the British gay magazine Attitude, will be editor.
“Style magazines are dead. Music magazines are boring. People are fed up of being dictated to,” said Newsome. “TRASH is about putting the fun and sunshine back into pop culture. It’s about being relevant to people’s lives, rather than empty hype. We’re very excited to be putting together a magazine that’s stylish and irreverent, accessible, sexy and fun.” Targeting 20- to 35-year-olds, the title is aiming for a circulation of 100,000. It will hit newsstands worldwide on July 4 and will cost about $6.16, including a free Ministry of Sound CD. The launch will be supported by a $2.34 million marketing campaign. — Samantha Conti