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Archives: April 2011

Daughter of Godfather Crooner Celebrates ‘Vintage Los Angeles’

GOOD Los Angeles editor Alissa Walker has a fun piece today about the Facebook efforts of Alison Martino, daughter of the actor (Al Martino) who played a crooner in The Godfather.

Thanks to her work on the 1998-2000 E! program Mysteries and Scandals with A.J. Benza, Martino is well-acquainted with the razed remnants of LA yesteryear. Now, she’s thrilled to be able to share that passion with the social community at large, via the Facebook page “Vintage Los Angeles.” Per the GOOD article:

She posted a photo of the infamously gaudy “Sheik’s House” in Beverly Hills, which burned down in a suspicious fire in the 1980s, and immediately got an even better photo (pictured) from a reader who spent the day sifting through his mother’s scrapbooks. “I’ve been looking for a photo of that for 20 years,” says Martino.

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Jamie Oliver and Better Homes and Gardens To Collaborate on Television

Meredith magazines has been looking to increase its presence on television with a new partnership between its flagship magazine Better Homes and Gardens and British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver.

Adweek reports that the first collaboration effort will involve an episode of “Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution” on ABC, the surprisingly controversial show in which Oliver comes to America and tries to get us to stop eating fast food and getting fat, which we as a country are wont to do. Thank god for the British! On the May 10th episode of Oliver’s show, BHG deputy garden editor Eric Liskey will help plant a (presumably edible) garden at a Los Angeles high school. The experience is also documented in the April issue of the magazine and in its new digital iPad edition.

Moving into television can be a smart move for magazines, such as Food & Wine‘s collaboration with Bravo’s hit show “Top Chef.” However, Adweek points out that BHG might have chosen a slightly more successful show: Oliver’s show is behind “NCIS” on CBS, “Glee” on Fox, and “The Biggest Loser” on NBC in ratings.

A Look Back at ‘Mission Accomplished’

On Sunday, it will be eight years since George Bush stood on an aircraft carrier and proudly declared “Mission Accomplished.” Bush – to put it in the nicest way possible – was being an idiot, because the Iraq war continues to rage on, 4,000 U.S. casualties (not to mention thousands of Iraqi deaths) later.

But Bush wasn’t the only one to join in the stupidity. The media was quick to jump on the bandwagon too. On the Huffington Post today, Greg Mitchell, a contributor to The Nation, explains how virtually every major media outlet jumped at the chance to announce that the Iraq war was over, and that the United States prevailed.

There was Chris Matthews, who got weird with this quote:

Women like a guy who’s president. Check it out. The women like this war. I think we like having a hero as our president. It’s simple.

Then Brian Williams told us all how “beautiful” the event was and USA Today ran a column titled “Relax, Celebrate Victory.” But perhaps no reaction was as ridiculous as the Op-Ed by Maureen Dowd, who took Top Gun references to an all time high:

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SF Weekly Fires Contributor For Political Activism

John Rinaldi, a.k.a. “Chicken John,” a San Francisco activist, performer, and writer, was until recently a regular contributor to the website of the SF Weekly, a sister paper of the LA Weekly. But then he organized a political protest against the city for allowing private vendors in a public park, and found himself out of a job.

“They fired me over the phone,” Chicken John explained to FishbowlLA. “Three hours before my deadline, [Keith Bowers, SF Weekly's Arts and Culture Editor] called to say that word came from on high that I was canned. Because of the park issue. He told me his boss said that my position on the park thing was contrary to his boss’s. He wouldn’t tell me which one.”

Not so long ago, newspapers, especially those labeling themselves as “alternative,” were a safe haven for opposing viewpoints. And San Francisco is a city with a proud history of political protests. So what’s going on? SF Weekly, we’d love to know what you were thinking.

Harper’s Bazaar Names New Accessories Editor

Harper’s Bazaar has hired Sam Broekema as its new Senior Accessories Editor. Broekema most recently worked as Vanity Fair’s Market Editor, where he covered both men’s and women’s markets.

Broekema begins his new position on May 16th, according to the magazine’s Editor-in-Chief Glenda Bailey.

Aol News Will No Longer Be Producing Any Original Content

There has been much condensing and slashing since the Aol Huffington Post merger, and now Mediaite reports that Aol News is officially folding into Huffington Post, and will no longer be producing any of its own original content.

This does not mean that the Aol News brand will cease to exist, but that all of the content will be produced and overseen by the Huffington Post team. So will Huffington Post completely overhaul Aol News with its, in the words of Bill Keller, “celebrity gossip, adorable kitten videos” and “left-wing soundtrack”?

The folding of the Aol News department and replacement by HuffPost will create an interesting dynamic between the more predominantly “red state” Aol users who will now be directed to “blue state” oriented Huffington Post content. Regardless, this provides the most convincing argument to date that Huffington Post was only “acquired by Aol,” as far as the finance departments are concerned.

What also remains to be seen is how many more layoffs might occur at Aol. So far the tally is up to 750 people, not to mention the freelancers.

Glamour Touts Social Media Savvy

Glamour’s Editor-in-Chief Cindi Leive and Publisher Bill Wakermann chatted up media buyers at Danny Meyer’s The Modern yesterday, hoping that the magazine’s social media heavy September issue will inspire the buyers’ wallets.

According to WWD, the September issue of Glamour will boost its social media presence by featuring a coordinating iPhone app:

Glamour collaborated with Spyderlink, a mobile marketing firm, to develop an iPhone that will allow readers to scan a Facebook icon that appears in editorial and advertising content in the September issue. Scanning the tag will take readers to a screen on their iPhones that will allow them to Like different brands and editorial features.

Will asking readers to do more, work? People love telling other people about the most mundane aspects of their lives through social networking, so yes, it probably will.

Longtime WLIW/Channel VP Laura Savini Stepping Down to Create Own Company

Viewers of Channel 21/WLIW are well aware of personality Laura Savini. She’s been with public television station for more than 20 years. Savini, though, is giving up her role as VP of Marketing and Communications. She was elevated to that position in 1996.

Savini, who is launching her own company Untamed Hair Productions and Consulting, will remain as WLIW host.

“I have grown up at, with and on WLIW21 as part of the team that took the station from a small local outlet to a national player,” reflected Savini. “As an on-air host, I took our viewers around the world and they, in return, warmly welcomed me into their homes and have enjoyed my personal approach to fundraising. WLIW and its viewers have played tremendous roles in my life. Now, I will expand my experiences and build my own company, Untamed Hair Productions. Audiences should stay tuned to see where I turn up next!”

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Los Angeles Review of Books Hires Young Adult/Children’s Editor

On Tuesday, May 3rd, the Los Angeles Review of Books will publish a critique of young adult title Zora and Me, written by author Margaret Stohl. This will mark the beginning of an imprint on the site of by newly hired young adult and children’s editor Cecil Castellucci (pictured).

Castellucci, an award-winning young adult author, tells Publisher’s Weekly that she already has seven more reviews banked and plans to occasionally get a recognizable literary figure to write up a favorite kids title. She also explains how the sideline gig came about:

Castellucci met LARB founder and editor Tom Lutz at a Los Angeles literary event last year. “Tom called me in August and offered me the position, but it seemed so daunting at the time that I turned him down,” says Castellucci.

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Businessman to Bid $200 Million for The Boston Globe

Here’s something to get you in a good mood before heading out into a weekend full of plans that you abandon by noon tomorrow: Aaron Kushner, an entrepreneur, is expected to bid $200 million for The Boston Globe.

The Globe – which is owned by The New York Times Company – has been losing money, much like every other newspaper. But Kushner apparently has a plan to turn it around. Thankfully, he’s been getting plenty of people to advise him on just how to do that:

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