ALL IN THE FAMILY: With one move, Chris Mitchell has picked up two new titles — vice president and publisher of Details and Vitals magazines. The 34-year-old steps aboard Wednesday and leaves behind his post at The New Yorker as associate publisher.
Mitchell replaces Bill Wackermann, who exited Details earlier this week to become vice president and publisher of Glamour. Mitchell’s replacement at The New Yorker is expected to be named within the next week or so.
Details, Vitals and The New Yorker and Glamour are owned by Advance Magazines, as is WWD.
Prior to joining The New Yorker nearly three years ago, Mitchell was publisher of ONE magazine, where he oversaw the launch of the design and lifestyle publication. Undaunted by the overcrowded field of men’s magazines, Mitchell said Details’ clear voice is an enormous help. Another plus is his mentor, New Yorker publisher and vice president David Carey, who gave Mitchell the go-ahead to take the next step in his career.
Through May of this year, Details leads the pack of men’s magazines with 397 ad pages, nearly an 8 percent increase compared with last year, according to Media Industry Newsletter. The magazine finished 41 pages ahead of its closest rival, Esquire.
Reached in his office at The New Yorker Thursday, Mitchell said, “Obviously, the magazine has such great momentum, and that’s a testament to what Bill’s done.”
Meanwhile, Wackermann has wasted no time making an impact in his new home. A day after he moved in as Glamour’s vice president and publisher, Vanessa Reed, associate publisher of marketing, moved out Wednesday. Reed, who has worked in publishing for 30 years, including the past six at Glamour, said she plans to stay in the business and harbors no ill feelings.
“Bill has his own team. That’s the way it goes,” she said. “It’s a great property. He has a good magazine.”
Some say more heads will roll under the new regime. Reed’s replacement has not been named.
MIN reported that Glamour’s year-to-date ad pages through May slipped 11 percent to 550.7 compared with last year. The pub wound up fourth behind Allure, Cosmopolitan and Elle, respectively. — R.F.
TEENAGE ANGST: Does the U.K. really need another celebrity magazine? It seems so. IPC, a division of Time Inc., has axed 19, its 36-year-old glossy title for young women, and is testing a new celebrity-driven teen weekly, called TeenNow. In a statement, IPC said the face of the teen market has changed over the past few years. “Sales patterns suggest that readership at the older end of the young women’s market appears to have migrated to the fashion and celebrity markets. 19 has been affected by this to the point that it is no longer economically viable.” TeenNow, a spin-off of IPC’s celebrity weekly magazine, Now, targets 14- to 16-year-olds and test-launched earlier this month. Priced at $2.70, the 92-page magazine features celebrity news, gossip and posters of heartthrobs such as Justin Timberlake and Orlando Bloom. It’s edited by Now’s deputy editor, Jeremy Mark. Sales for 19 fell from 216,959 in 1995 to 81,800 for the July to December 2003 period, according to current figures from the British Audit Bureau of Circulations. Sales at Now stand at 592,076 for the same period. 19 is the latest teen title to disappear from the newsstand. As reported, Emap last month announced the closure of its teen title, J17, which was launched in 1983 under the title Just Seventeen. The last issues of both J17 and 19 will be May. — Ellen Burney
VMAN GOING HE-MAN: Stylist Andrew Richardson has joined VMan, the biannual men’s fashion and style magazine, as fashion director. He continues to edit Richardson, a racier magazine that explores the relationship between sex, art and style. Richardson’s touch will be seen in VMan’s third issue, which hits newsstands in September.
His work with V contributors David Sims, Mario Sorrenti and Mario Testino was a plus with VMan editor Armand Limnander, who plans to make the most of those ties, as well as Richardson’s strong fashion background. He said he was game to work with VMan editor in chief Stephen Gan. Richardson aims to shake things up a bit by making the magazine more manly, à la James Coburn.
“I’m a bit tired of the Williamsburg electroclash shaggy-haired boy who has done one two many Es,” Richardson said.
While he’s known for a sex-charged aesthetic, Limnander said his work at VMan will “definitely be about clothing and producing powerful images.”
With his new gig and his ongoing freelance work at Harper’s Bazaar, Richardson begged off giving the next pub date for his own magazine. “It comes out whenever it’s ready or whenever I get around to it.” — R.F.