Twenty-six years after publishing Off the Wall Street Journal, a parody of the famed business paper, Tony Hendra and his team of funny men collaborators return with My Wall Street Journal, a humorous take on the future of the Rupert Murdoch-owned paper. The 24-page tabloid starts out aping the WSJ‘s appearance, gradually devolving into a New York Post replica.
“We wanted to make it look like what will happen [to the WSJ] when Rupert has finally had his way with it,” Hendra says. “It’s not a parody. Travesty is a better word.”
The paper, published by the New York Press and Manhattan Media, features very Onion-like headlines such as “Could Hillary Win as an African-American Male?,” and “Bush Abolishes Death, Taxes.” “I was way over-assigned,” Hendra says. “I didn’t realize how little you could get in a tabloid page.”
The editor was amused by today’s New York Times story that a WSJ official was buying the papers. He is prepared, however, for any negative reaction from the company. “[Dow Jones was] pretty thin-skinned the first time around,” Hendra tells us.
The goal is to break even and, ideally, make money on the printing. “The business model is pretty simple, Hendra says. “Sell a lot of them.” Manhattan Media will be “well into break even territory” if half of the 200,000 available on newsstands are sold (an additional 50,000 will be sold in bookstores). At $3.95 per paper, the company will gain almost $1 million in revenue — an amount Murdoch “loses on the New York Post before lunch,” Hendra jokes — if the print run sells out.
Rather than waiting another 26 years to publish again, Hendra hopes to spin the paper off into a business and media-focused parody Web site.
Other contributors to My WSJ include David Blum, Richard Belzer, Andy Borowitz and Todd Hanson.