PEOPLE IN THE ACADEMY: At People Magazine, editors generally worry about being too “Inside Baseball.” Now, at least when it comes to the Oscars, they want to be just that. People managing editor Martha Nelson is rolling out a daily edition of the magazine to be distributed throughout Los Angeles during the week before the Oscars.
This story first appeared in the January 20, 2004 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“It’ll publish five times as a daily newspaper that’ll be distributed to hotels, agencies, studios, spas, hair salons and hotels of a certain caliber,” said Nelson. “Anyone who’s been in L.A. during that week knows how crazy it is and full of gossip and fun. We have a big bureau in Los Angeles. There’s an excess of reporting that gets left on the floor, and a lot of stuff happens inside the industry. This particular publication will be as likely to feature [Revolution Studios boss] Joe Roth as Nicole Kidman.” Sports Illustrated does a daily at Olympics and Us Weekly does one for New York fashion week. — Jacob Bernstein
SOMEWHERE OFF IN THE GALA-XY: Gruner + Jahr USA has finished the second round of prototyping on its celebrity weekly, Gala. Now it’s up to the board.
Sources close to the title said they met last week and reacted favorably, but still haven’t reached a decision. For one, it’s a competitive market, and two, there’s a number of possibilities for rolling the title out. The company, sources said, could do a test, go for a soft launch or go full throttle.
The design of the second prototype was spearheaded by Robert Priest, the well-known gun for hire who redesigned Esquire and worked on the relaunch of House & Garden under Dominique Browning.
Since the celebrity market is now so crowded, G+J has to find a way to differentiate Gala. Two sources said it will give the magazine a “high-end” bent, like its European counterpart. While French Gala is technically a “tabloid,” it offers a lot of lifestyle and fashion coverage. The current issue, for example, features news stories on Britney Spears, Michael Jackson and Prince Charles, in addition to a four-page gallery of gourmet sandwiches and a 10-page portfolio of runway shots from the spring 2004 collections. — J.B.