Jann Wenner


A show about Rolling Stone is coming to Showtime, WWD has learned.

A spokeswoman from Rolling Stone declined to comment, but insiders said staffers at the magazine have been talking about the new show for weeks.

The Wenner Media-owned magazine is said to be in the early stages of developing the project.

Showtime provided more detail, adding that it ordered a half-hour pilot for a “pop-culture focused docu-series” in the vein of Rolling Stone magazine.”

Left/Right, which also produces “The Circus,” has signed on, and Gus Wenner, Banks Tarver and Ken Druckermann, will serve as executive producers.

Rolling Stone has come under fire in recent months following its controversial profile on drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán inked by actor Sean Penn. That story, which even Penn deemed a failure, preceded a botched investigative story on rape on the campus of the University of Virginia in 2014. Fallout from that feature, “A Rape on Campus,” spurred a shake up at both Rolling Stone, and its parent company, including layoffs on both the edit and publishing sides of the firm. The magazine, like its rivals, is in the process of trying to ramp up its digital and live events business under heir apparent Gus Wenner, but insiders said that drumming up new advertisers for Rolling Stone has been a challenge in light of recent controversies.

Although it is not clear whether Showtime will delve into recent controversies, it should be noted that Rolling Stone will mark its 50th anniversary in 2017, which would make for an interesting hook. An autobiography on Wenner cofounder and publisher Jann Wenner is also slated to be released next year. According to reports, Knopf acquired Wenner’s book for a seven-figure sum.

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