MUSICAL LADS: On Friday, Dennis Publishing named Jimmy Jellinek the new editor in chief of Maxim, confirming a report on WWD.com that he would get the job. He had been editor in chief of Stuff, Maxim’s smaller sister title, since May 2005. Ed Needham, Maxim’s top editor since July 2004, is leaving Dennis and New York to move back to London. His departure comes two months after that of editorial director Andy Clerkson, who also announced plans to move back to England (where he is said to be planning a new business venture with Greg Gutfeld, former editor of Stuff and Maxim U.K.).
In an e-mail sent Friday to employees, Dennis president Steven Colvin disputed a report in the New York Post claiming Needham was being “forced out.” “Ed actually resigned about three months ago and has been quietly and professionally working out his notice period,” wrote Colvin. “His decision to leave is purely based on his desire to relocate back to England with his wife and young child.”
While insiders say Jellinek has impressed Dennis management, he did not bring about a dramatic improvement in Stuff’s fortunes. So far in 2006, the magazine is down 11 percent on the newsstand, according to an estimate by a source who tracks circulation in the men’s category. Asked to comment on that estimate, a Dennis spokesman said, “Go right ahead and print it.”
Dennis said a new editor of Stuff would be named shortly. The company has yet to comment on reports that it is exploring a sale with the help of investment bank Allen & Co.
— Jeff Bercovici
STAR (IN)TURN: The odds of becoming famous simply by interning at Teen Vogue just improved significantly.
A Teen Vogue intern named Whitney snagged a prominent role on MTV’s new reality show, “The Hills,” after she befriended the show’s focal point and her fellow Teen Vogue intern, Lauren “L.C.” Conrad, in the magazine’s L.A. offices.
Now, Conrad has gone from intern to cover star, to promote the first episode of “The Hills,” airing on May 31. Teen Vogue’s editor in chief, Amy Astley, said of her June/July cover subject, “She was a great intern, really focused, loves fashion, very pleasant, hardworking, eager to please, just what you expect.” However, when it came to talking about “The Hills” and Astley’s own cameos on the series, she was more tight-lipped. “I have signed sooo many confidentiality agreements,” she said. “Watch the show.”
Conrad offered at least a glimpse of her Teen Vogue internship experiences, some of which will end up on air, during her interview with the magazine’s Lauren Waterman. “I worked on the Ciara cover shoot, a Joy Bryant fitting, and I did an interview with Natasha Bedingfield,” she said.
— Sara James