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The Hollywood Reporter

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The Hollywood Reporter
Hollywood Reporter June 2018.jpg
Damien Chazelle on the August 2018 cover
Editorial DirectorMatthew Belloni
CategoriesEntertainment
FrequencyWeekly
PublisherLynne Segall
First issueSeptember 3, 1930; 88 years ago (1930-09-03)
CompanyBillboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group
(Valence Media)
CountryUnited States
Based inLos Angeles, California, U.S.
LanguageEnglish
Websitehollywoodreporter.com
ISSN0018-3660

The Hollywood Reporter (THR) is an American digital and print magazine, and website, which focuses on the Hollywood film, television, and entertainment industries. It was founded in 1930 as a daily trade paper, and in 2010 switched to a weekly large-format print magazine with a revamped website.

Headquartered in Los Angeles, THR is part of the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group, a group of properties that includes Billboard and SpinMedia. It is owned by Valence Media, a holding company co-founded by Todd Boehly, an executive of its previous owners, Guggenheim Partners and Eldridge Industries.[1]

History[edit]

Early years[edit]

THR was founded in 1930 by William R. "Billy" Wilkerson (1890–1962) as Hollywood's first daily entertainment trade newspaper.[2] The first edition appeared on September 3, 1930 and featured Wilkerson's front-page "Tradeviews" column, which became influential. The newspaper appeared Monday to Saturday for the first 10 years, except for a brief period, then Monday to Friday from 1940. Wilkerson ran the THR until his death in September 1962, although his final column appeared 18 months prior.[3] Wilkerson's wife, Tichi Wilkerson Kassel, took over as publisher and editor-in-chief when her husband died.

Hollywood blacklist[edit]

From the late 1930s, Wilkerson used THR to push the view that the industry was a communist stronghold. In particular, he opposed the screenplay writers' trade union, the Screen Writers Guild, which he called the "Red Beachhead."[4][5] In 1946 the Guild considered creating an American Authors' Authority to hold copyright for writers, instead of ownership passing to the studios. Wilkerson devoted his "Tradeviews" column to the issue on July 29, 1946, headlined "A Vote for Joe Stalin." He went to confession before publishing it, knowing the damage it would cause, but was apparently encouraged by the priest to go ahead with it.[4][6]

The column contained the first industry names, including Dalton Trumbo and Howard Koch, on what became the Hollywood blacklist, known as "Billy's list." Eight of the 11 people Wilkerson named were among the "Hollywood Ten" who were blacklisted after hearings in 1947 by the House Un-American Activities Committee.[4][7] When Wilkerson died, his THR obituary said that he had "named names, pseudonyms and card numbers and was widely credited with being chiefly responsible for preventing communists from becoming entrenched in Hollywood production."[4]

In 1997, THR reporter David Robb wrote a story about the newspaper's involvement, but the editor, Robert J. Dowling, declined to run it. For the blacklist's 65th anniversary in 2012, the THR published a lengthy investigative piece about Wilkerson's role, by reporters Gary Baum and Daniel Miller.[4] The same edition carried an apology from Wilkerson's son W. R. Wilkerson III. He wrote that his father had been motivated by revenge for his thwarted ambition to own a studio.[8]

1988–2008[edit]

On April 11, 1988, Tichi Wilkerson Kassel sold the paper to BPI Communications, owned by Affiliated Publications, for $26.7 million.[9] Robert J. Dowling became THR president in 1988, and editor-in-chief and publisher in 1991.[3] Dowling hired Alex Ben Block as editor in 1990. Block and Teri Ritzer dampened much of the sensationalism and cronyism that was prominent in the paper under the Wilkersons. In 1994, BPI Communications was sold to Verenigde Nederlandse Uitgeverijen (VNU) for $220 million.[10]

After Block left, former Variety film editor, Anita Busch, became editor between 1999 and 2001. Busch was credited with making the paper competitive with Variety. Tony Uphoff assumed the publisher position in November 2005. In March 2006, a private equity consortium led by Blackstone and KKR, both with ties to the conservative movement in the United States, acquired THR along with the other assets of VNU.[11] It joined those publications with AdWeek and A.C. Nielsen to form The Nielsen Company.[12]

2009–present[edit]

In December 2009, Prometheus Global Media, a newly formed company formed by Pluribus Capital Management and Guggenheim Partners, and chaired by Jimmy Finkelstein, CEO of News Communications, parent of political journal The Hill, acquired THR from Nielsen Business Media. It pledged to invest in the brand and grow the company. Richard Beckman, formerly of Condé Nast, was appointed as CEO.

In 2010, Beckman purchased THR from Guggenheim Partners and Pluribus Capital, and recruited Min, the former editor-in-chief of Us Weekly, to "eviscerate" the existing daily trade paper and reinvent it as a glossy, large-format weekly magazine.[13][14] The Hollywood Reporter relaunched with a weekly print edition and a revamped website that enabled it to break news. Eight months after its initial report, The New York Times took note of the many scoops THR had generated, adding that the new glossy format seemed to be succeeding with its "rarefied demographic", stating, "They managed to change the subject by going weekly... The large photos, lush paper stock and great design are a kind of narcotic here."[15]

By February 2013, the Times returned to THR, filing a report on a party for Academy Award nominees the magazine had hosted at the Los Angeles restaurant Spago. Noting the crowd of top celebrities in attendance, the Times alluded to the fact that many Hollywood insiders were now referring to THR as "the new Vanity Fair". Ad sales since Min's hiring were up more than 50%, while traffic to the magazine's website had grown by 800%.[16]

Since January 2014, The Hollywood Reporter has been led by co-presidents Janice Min and John Amato.[17][18]

Ownership changes[edit]

John Kilcullen replaced Uphoff in October 2006, as publisher of Billboard.[19][20][21] Kilcullen was a defendant in Billboard's infamous "dildo" lawsuit, in which he was accused of race discrimination and sexual harassment.[11] VNU settled the suit on the courthouse steps.[22] Kilcullen "exited" Nielsen in February 2008 "to pursue his passion as an entrepreneur."[23] Matthew King, vice president for content and audience, editorial director Howard Burns, and executive editor Peter Pryor left the paper in a wave of layoffs in December 2006; editor Cynthia Littleton, widely respected throughout the industry, reported directly to Kilcullen. The Reporter absorbed another blow when Littleton left her position for an editorial job at Variety in March 2007. Web editor Glenn Abel also left after 16 years with the paper.[24]

Guggenheim Partners announced on December 17, 2015 that it would sell the Prometheus media properties to its executive Todd Boehly.[25][26][27] The company was sold to Eldridge Industries in February 2017.[28][29] On February 1, 2018, Eldridge Industries announced the merger of its media properties with Media Rights Capital to form Valence Media.[30][31]

Editors and publishers[edit]

Janice Min, THR editor since 2010

THR's editors have included Janice Min (2010–2017), Elizabeth Guider (2007–2010), Cynthia Littleton (2005–2007), Howard Burns (2001–2006), Anita Busch (1999–2001), and Alex Ben Block (1990–1999).

In April 2007, industry veteran Eric Mika was named to the newly created role of Senior Vice President, Publishing Director of The Reporter. Having previously served as Senior Vice President and Managing Director of Nielsen Business Media's Film and Performing Arts Group and, before that, as Vice President and Managing Director for Variety, Mika assumed responsibility for the general management of sales, marketing and editorial for The Hollywood Reporter, as well as the brand's ancillary products, events, licensing business and partnerships.[32]

In June 2007, Rose Einstein, former Vice President, Advertising Sales for Netflix and 25-year veteran of Reed Business Media, was named to the newly created role of Vice President, Associate Publisher to oversee all sales and business development for The Reporter. She left that position in June 2009.[33] Mika left THR in early 2010.

In July 2007, THR named Elizabeth Guider as its new editor. An 18-year veteran of Variety, where she served as Executive Editor, Guider assumed responsibility for the editorial vision and strategic direction of The Hollywood Reporter's daily and weekly editions, digital content offerings and executive conferences. After nearly running the publication into the ground, Guider left The Hollywood Reporter in early 2010.[34]

In April 2010, Lori Burgess was named as publisher. Burgess had been publisher of OK! magazine since October 2008. Michaela Apruzzese was named associate publisher, entertainment in May 2010.[35] Apruzzese previously served as the director of movie advertising for Los Angeles Times Media Group.

In May 2010, Janice Min was named Editorial Director. In January 2014, she was promoted to President/Chief Creative Officer with additional oversight of THR's sister brand, Billboard.[36] Lynne Segall, former vice president and associate publisher, was named publisher and senior vice president in June 2011.[37]

In February 2017, Min announced she was stepping down from her role as President/Chief Creative Officer overseeing The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard to take on a new role at parent company. Simultaneously, it was announced that longtime executive editor Matthew Belloni would take over as Editorial Director.[38]

Editions[edit]

Print[edit]

The weekly print edition of The Hollywood Reporter includes profiles, original photography and interviews with entertainment figures; articles about major upcoming releases and product launches; film reviews and film festival previews; coverage of the latest industry deals, TV ratings, box-office figures and analysis of global entertainment business trends and indicators; photos essays and reports from premieres and other red-carpet events; and the latest on Hollywood fashion and lifestyle.[citation needed]

Website[edit]

The Reporter published a primitive "satellite" digital edition in the late 1980s. It became the first daily entertainment trade paper to start a website in 1995.[39] Initially, the site offered free news briefs with complete coverage firewalled as a premium paid service. In later years, the website became mostly free as it became more reliant on ad sales and less on subscribers. The website had already gone through a redesign by the time competitor Variety took to the web in 1998. In 2002, the Reporter's website won the Jesse H. Neal Award for business journalism. In November 2013, The Hollywood Reporter launched the style site Pret-a-Reporter.[40]

THR.com, The Hollywood Reporter's website, re-launched in 2010, offers breaking entertainment news, reviews and blogs; original video content (and film and TV clips) and photo galleries; plus in-depth movie, television, music, awards, style, technology and business coverage. As of August 2013, Comscore measured 12 million unique visitors per month to the site.[41]

Editors and reporters[edit]

The Hollywood Reporter has a staff of roughly 150. In addition to hiring Eric Mika, Rose Eintstein and Elizabeth Guider, the Reporter hired the following staff in 2007:

  • Todd Cunningham, former assistant managing editor of the LA Business Journal, as National Editor for The Hollywood Reporter: Premier Edition
  • Steven Zeitchik as Senior Writer, based in New York, where he provide news analysis and features for the Premiere Edition
  • Melissa Grego, former managing editor of TV Week, as Editor of HollywoodReporter.com
  • Jonathan Landreth as the new Asian bureau chief, in addition to 13 new writers across Asia

However, staffing levels began to drop again in 2008. In April, Nielsen Business Media eliminated between 40 and 50 editorial staff positions at The Hollywood Reporter and its sister publications: Adweek, Brandweek, Editor & Publisher and Mediaweek.[42] In December, another 12 editorial positions were cut at the trade paper.[43] In addition, 2008 saw substantial turnover in the online department: THR.com Editor Melissa Grego left her position in July to become executive editor of Broadcasting & Cable,[44] and Managing Editor Scott McKim left to become a new media manager at Knox College. With the entertainment industry as a whole shrinking, "Hollywood studios have cut more than $20 million from the Motion Picture Association of America budget this year. The resulting staff and program reductions are expected to permanently shrink the scope and size of the six-studio trade and advocacy group."[45]

Staffing at THR in 2008 saw even further cutbacks with "names from today's tragic bloodletting of The Hollywood Reporter's staff" adding up quickly in the hard economic times at the end of 2008.[46] "The trade has not only been thin, but only publishing digital version 19 days this holiday season. Film writers Leslie Simmons, Carolyn Giardina, Gregg Goldstein, plus lead TV critic Barry Garron and TV reporter Kimberly Nordyke, also special issues editor Randee Dawn Cohen out of New York and managing editor Harley Lond and international department editor Hy Hollinger, plus Dan Evans, Lesley Goldberg, Michelle Belaski, James Gonzalez were among those chopped from the masthead."[46]

When Janice Min and Lori Burgess came on board in 2010, the editorial and sales staff increased nearly 50%, respectively. Min hired various recognized journalists in the entertainment industry, most notably Variety film critic Todd McCarthy[47] after his firing from Variety in March 2010, as well as Kim Masters of NPR, Tim Goodman of the San Francisco Chronicle, Lacey Rose of Forbes, and Pamela McClintock of Variety.

Competition and lawsuits[edit]

Variety was established in 1905 in New York City as a weekly trade paper, initially covering vaudeville, Tin Pan Alley and the city's Theater District. In 1932, Variety sued The Hollywood Reporter for $46,500 for plagiarism, alleging that THR was plagiarizing information from Variety following its publication in New York on Tuesdays, by way of phoning or wiring the information back to Hollywood, so that THR could publish the information before Variety reached Hollywood three days later on Friday.[48] Then, in 1933, Variety started its own daily Hollywood edition, Daily Variety, to cover the film industry.[49]

From 1988 to 2014, Daily Variety and The Hollywood Reporter were both located on Wilshire Boulevard along Miracle Mile. In March 2007, The Hollywood Reporter surpassed Daily Variety to achieve the largest total distribution of any entertainment daily.[50]

In 2011, Deadline Hollywood, a property of Penske Media Corporation, sued The Hollywood Reporter for more than $5 million, alleging copyright infringement. In 2013, THR's parent company settled the suit. According to The Wall Street Journal, "The lawsuit [was] widely viewed in Hollywood as a proxy for the bitter war for readers and advertising dollars... The two sides agreed on a statement reading in part: 'Prometheus admits that The Hollywood Reporter copied source code from Penske Media Corporation's Web site www.tvline.com; Prometheus and The Hollywood Reporter have apologized to Penske Media.'"[51]

The Hollywood Reporter maintained a business association with the home entertainment trade publication Home Media Magazine, owned by Questex Media Group. It gave THR access into the home entertainment trade, which Variety similarly enjoyed with its former sister publication, the Reed-owned Video Business.

Current status and legacy[edit]

The Hollywood Reporter published out of the same offices on Sunset Boulevard for more than a half century. Today, the offices are located in L.A.'s Mid-Wilshire district.

The Hollywood Reporter sponsors and hosts a number of major industry events and awards ceremonies. It hosted 13 such events in 2012, including the Women in Entertainment Breakfast, where it announced its annual Power 100 list of the industry's most powerful women;[52] the Key Art Awards (for achievement in entertainment advertising and communications); Power Lawyers Breakfast; Next Gen (honoring the industry's 50 fastest-rising stars and executives age 35 and under); Nominees Night; and the 25 Most Powerful Stylists Luncheon.

Awards season[edit]

Entertainment-industry awards receive ample coverage from The Hollywood Reporter, both in print and online. The magazine handicaps all the races, profiles the contenders and analyzes the business impact of nominations and wins. THR awards analyst Scott Feinberg analyzes and predicts the Emmy and Oscar races (his weekly Feinberg Forecast is published from late August up to the Academy Awards broadcast). THR also offers special print editions, such as its annual Oscar and Emmy issues, during respective awards seasons. THR.com features The Race, an awards-coverage blog, which encompasses Race to the Oscars, an app dedicated to Academy Awards coverage for iPhone and Android platforms.[citation needed]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Soshnick, Scott (March 9, 2017). "Dodgers' Boehly Leads $100 Million DraftKings Investment". Bloomberg News. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
  2. ^ "Billy Wilkerson". Archived from the original on June 13, 2014. Retrieved October 8, 2013.
  3. ^ a b Littleton, Cynthia; Byrge, Duane (March 17, 2005). "Paper Tale". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on October 9, 2007.
  4. ^ a b c d e Baum, Gary; Miller, Daniel (November 19, 2012). "The Hollywood Reporter, After 65 Years, Addresses Role in Blacklist". The Hollywood Reporter.
  5. ^ Holley, Val (2007). Mike Connolly and the Manly Art of Hollywood Gossip. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland. p. 105. ISBN 978-0-7864-1552-6.
  6. ^ Wilkerson, William (July 29, 1946). "A Vote For Joe Stalin". The Hollywood Reporter. p. 1.
  7. ^ Roberts, Jerry (2010). The Complete History of American Film Criticism, Santa Monica Press, p. 85.
  8. ^ Wilkerson III, W. R. (November 19, 2012). "An Apology: The Son of THR Founder Billy Wilkerson on the Publication's Dark Past". The Hollywood Reporter.
    "Hollywood Reporter Apologizes For Fueling Hollywood Blacklist". HuffPost. Associated Press. November 19, 2012.
    "Son Of The Hollywood Reporter's Founder Apologizes For Father's Role In Hollywood Blacklist". KCBS News. November 20, 2012.
    "Hollywood Blacklist Victim Responds To Trade Paper's Apology For Fueling Witch Hunt". KCBS News. November 20, 2012. Retrieved September 4, 2017.
    Critchlow, Donald T. (October 21, 2013). When Hollywood Was Right: How Movie Stars, Studio Moguls, and Big Business Remade American Politics. Cambridge University Press. p. 2. ISBN 978-0521519694.
    Smith, Jeff (March 26, 2014). Film Criticism, the Cold War, and the Blacklist: Reading the Hollywood Reds. University of California Press. p. 273. (Subscription required (help)).
  9. ^ Anderson, A. Donald (August 7, 1988). "Hollywood's Version of Trade Wars". The New York Times.
  10. ^ "Dutch Buyer Acquires BPI". The New York Times. January 15, 1994. Retrieved October 10, 2015.
  11. ^ a b "'Twas down and truly dirty at Billboard". Media Life. June 24, 2004. Archived from the original on April 9, 2009. Retrieved April 9, 2009.
  12. ^ "Nielsen Media parent, VNU, agrees to $9B purchase". Tampa Bay Business Journal. March 9, 2006. Retrieved 2017-08-04.
  13. ^ Barnes, Brooks. "Hollywood Reporter to Become a Weekly Magazine". The New York Times. Retrieved October 11, 2013.
  14. ^ "Most Intriguing: A Marquee Year for Richard Beckman in 2011?". min Online. November 22, 2010. Archived from the original on November 16, 2016. Retrieved December 9, 2016.
  15. ^ Carr, David (May 29, 2011). "An Outsider Making Waves in Hollywood". The New York Times. Retrieved October 11, 2013.
  16. ^ Barnes, Brooks (February 15, 2013). "From Has-Been to Life of the Party". The New York Times. Retrieved October 11, 2013.
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  18. ^ Raphael, T J (January 15, 2013). "Yahoo Exec Tapped To Head Prometheus Global Media". Folio:. Retrieved September 4, 2017.
  19. ^ Dilworth, Dianna (August 11, 2010). "John Kilcullen "For Dummies" Creator Joins FastPencil's Board". Adweek. Retrieved 2017-08-04.
  20. ^ Arango, Tim (June 24, 2004). "Sign of Trouble – Billboard Suit Claims Harassment, Defamation". New York Post.
  21. ^ "Ex-Billboard editors file $29M sexual harassment suit". Court TV. June 24, 2004.
  22. ^ Grinberg, Emanuella (June 6, 2006). "Sex discrimination suit against Billboard magazine settles during jury selection". CourtTV. Archived from the original on June 12, 2006. Retrieved August 5, 2017.
  23. ^ Finke, Nikki (February 28, 2008). "The Hollywood Reporter's Publisher Exits; More Variety-zation Of THR's Nielsen". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved September 5, 2017.
  24. ^ Finke, Nikki (March 5, 2007). "H'Wood Reporter Editor Cynthia Littleton Jumps To Variety; Anne Thompson Also; HR Now Looking for 'Big Name' Editor". Deadline Hollywood.
  25. ^ Lieberman, David; Busch, Anita (December 17, 2015). "Guggenheim Prepares To Sell Hollywood Reporter, Dick Clark Productions To Exec". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved September 4, 2017.
  26. ^ Chariton, Jordan (December 17, 2015). "Guggenheim Media Spins Off Money-Losing Hollywood Reporter, Billboard to Company President Todd Boehly (Exclusive)". TheWrap. Retrieved December 18, 2015.
  27. ^ "Hollywood Reporter Parent Company Spins Off Media Assets to Executive". The Hollywood Reporter. December 27, 2015.
  28. ^ Sass, Erik (February 6, 2017). "'The Hollywood Reporter,' 'Billboard' Put Up For Sale". MediaPost. New York City: MediaPost Communications. Retrieved September 23, 2017.
  29. ^ Donnelly, Matt (February 6, 2017). "The Hollywood Reporter for Sale Amid Ongoing Losses, Janice Min to Step Aside". TheWrap. Los Angeles. Retrieved September 23, 2017.
  30. ^ Faughnder, Ryan. "'House of Cards' producer MRC merges with Dick Clark Productions and Hollywood Reporter publisher". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2018-03-29.
  31. ^ Wallenstein, Andrew (2018-02-01). "Media Rights Capital, Dick Clark Prods., THR-Billboard Form Combined Company". Variety. Retrieved 2018-03-29.
  32. ^ "Eric Mika Appointed to Boost THR". Min. April 30, 2007. Archived from the original on September 5, 2017. Retrieved September 4, 2017.
  33. ^ "The Hollywood Reporter Cuts More Staff". TheWrap. June 3, 2009. Retrieved September 4, 2017.
  34. ^ Friedman, Roger (October 11, 2010). "The Hollywood Reporter Sheds Editor, Heads to Tabloid Land". Hollywood 411. Archived from the original on September 5, 2017. Retrieved September 4, 2017.
  35. ^ Alvarez, Alex (April 26, 2010). "Lori Burgess Leaves OK! For The Hollywood Reporter". Adweek.
  36. ^ Lewis, Randy (January 9, 2014). "Billboard shakeup puts Hollywood Reporter's Janice Min in charge". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on May 14, 2014. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  37. ^ "Lynne Segall Joins Hollywood Reporter as SVP, Publisher Jumps from Deadline.com". Adweek. June 17, 2011.
  38. ^ Barnes, Brooks (February 6, 2017). "Janice Min Will Step Down as Hollywood Reporter's Top Editor". New York Times. Retrieved October 2, 2017.
  39. ^ Clinard, Josh. "Covering the entertainment biz: Hollywood Reporter vs. Variety". Society of American Business Editors and Writers. Retrieved October 11, 2013.
  40. ^ "The Hollywood Reporter Launches New Style Website Pret-A-Reporter". The Hollywood Reporter. November 13, 2013. Retrieved September 4, 2017.
  41. ^ "Comscore subscriber data". Comscore. Retrieved October 11, 2013.
  42. ^ Ali, Rafat (April 10, 2008). "Nielsen Business Media Lays Off Between 40-50; Mainly Editorial". Gigaom. Retrieved September 4, 2017.
  43. ^ "UPDATE: Layoffs Gut Hollywood Reporter; Variety's Stylephile Victim Of Recession". Deadline Hollywood. December 4, 2008.
  44. ^ "Melissa Grego Joins B&C as Executive Editor". Broadcast & Cable. July 8, 2008.
  45. ^ DiOrio, Carl (March 3, 2009). "Hollywood studios' trade group faces leaner budget". Reuters.
  46. ^ a b Finke, Nikki (December 4, 2008). "UPDATE: Layoffs Gut Hollywood Reporter; Variety's Stylephile Victim Of Recession". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved May 19, 2013.
  47. ^ "Todd McCarthy Joins The Hollywood Reporter".
  48. ^ "'Variety' Charges Hollywood Daily of Stealing Its News Each Week". Variety. January 5, 1932. p. 2.
  49. ^ "Daily Variety on Coast". Variety, September 12, 1933 p. 5
  50. ^ ABC Publisher's Statement, as compared to Variety and Daily Variety, March 2007
  51. ^ "Owners of Competing Hollywood Publications Settle Copyright Lawsuit". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved October 8, 2013.
  52. ^ Cadenas, Kerensa. "Diane Keaton to be Honored with Sherry Lansing Leadership Award". IndieWire. Retrieved September 4, 2017.

External links[edit]