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Posts Tagged ‘Joanna Coles’

Joanna Coles Named Editor-in-Chief of Cosmopolitan

Joanna Coles has been named editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan. Coles comes to Cosmo from Marie Claire, where she served the same role since 2006. Coles is succeeding Kate White, who — according to a Hearst release — has decided to “shift focus” to her writing and speaking endeavors. White will be staying on as an advisor to Hearst.

“Joanna has done an incredible job at Marie Claire over the past six years,” said David Carey, president of Hearst Magazines. “Her great success in television and social media, her sharp instinct about women and what they want, and her experience working on a global brand make her an ideal choice for the editor role at Cosmo.”

Of White’s departure, Carey added, “She leaves big shoes — or should I say stilettos — to fill and we have no doubt she’ll continue to reach bestseller status in her post-Cosmo career.”

Coles begins at Cosmo September 10.

The A-List Returns! Barbara Walters, Charlie Rose, Barry Diller Hold Court at Michael’s

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As Januarys go, this one has been a bit of a snoozer, but things are finally picking up now that the boldface names have returned to their regular perches at Michael’s. The joint was jumping today as morning talkers (Charlie Rose, Barbara Walters), media moguls (Barry Diller) and fashionistas (Marie Claire‘s Joanna Coles) were all in full power lunch mode. It’s about time!

I was joined today by Seventeen editor-in-chief Ann Shoket and Hearst executive director of public relations Alexandra Carlin. It’s been a while since Seventeen was required reading in my house (I still remember begging my father to drive me to the stationary store,  so I could be the first to get the magazine’s coveted September back to school issue). Back then, I’d devour every oversize page, finding tons of inspiration and validation about surviving the treacherous teenage years in one piece — and in style.

Well, the more things change, the more they stay the same. Ann, who celebrated her fifth anniversary with the magazine last week, says she feels a “huge responsibility” to readers, which means addressing the issues they care most about (a tall order to say the least). Between dealing with ‘sextortion’ (boyfriends threatening to dump girls if they don’t submit sexually) and the barrage of unrealistic images of physical perfection all around them, today’s teenage girls, says Ann, are under “huge pressure” all while dealing with the requisite drama that comes with being a high school girl.  Seventeen‘s mission is to empower teenage girls (the average reader is 16), often by reporting on celebrities who can be a source of inspiration.  For next month’s cover, the magazine scored the first interview with a post-rehab Demi Lovato who opens up about how she battled back from anorexia, bulimia, bipolar disorder and cutting. “Demi was amazing. It’s so refreshing to have a celebrity be honest about their struggles. It’s great for girls to read about someone like that.”

Diane Clehane, Ann Shoket and Alexandra Carlin
Diane Clehane, Ann Shoket and Alexandra Carlin

Seventeen, says Ann, is also a resource for girls about subjects they might want to talk about with their parents, but can’t. Topic A: ‘Digital Drama’ – the magazine’s clever moniker for ‘cyber bullying’ which “sounds so nineties.” Seventeen is so committed to wiping out the epidemic that Ann created the ‘Delete Digital Drama’ campaign for the magazine. “We only had to deal with the mean girl phone calls, but today social media has created so many more outlets for bullying to happen. It’s a serious problem.”

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All in the Family with Joe Kernen & A Dark Shadows Star is Reborn

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It was a bustling scene at Michael’s today as the power lunch crowd  crammed in some last minute networking before their late summer vacations. In the mix: talking heads (Joe Kernen, Andrew Ross Sorkin), hot shot editors (David Zinczenko, Joanna Coles), and beauty gurus (Estee Lauder’s John Demsey and Thia Breen at separate tables).

I was joined today by Kathryn Leigh Scott who I met years ago while working on a piece for TV Guide about the ongoing appeal of the ’60s Gothic soap, Dark Shadows. Long before Twilight, Kathryn starred as the doomed lady love of vampire Barnabas Collins. Like its eternal leading man, Dark Shadows just won’t die. Tim Burton, one of the show’s most fervent fans, is currently shooting a big screen version starring Johnny Depp as Barnabas and scheduled for a May 2012 release. Kathryn just returned from London where she shot a cameo role for the film. I was dying to get her take on how Johnny is sinking his fangs into the role, but Kathryn demurred, “I’ve been sworn to secrecy!”

We had plenty to talk about anyway. Kathryn’s  latest novel, Dark Passages (Pomegranate Press) is a love letter to Dark Shadows and is already getting rave reviews. Set in the swinging ’60s, it tells the tale of an actress moonlighting as a Playboy bunny who just happens to be vampire and is determined to make it in New York City without her supernatural powers. While working on the cult hit Dark Passages, she meets her nemesis, a 300-year-old witch. ”Anyone who, as a kid, ran home from school to watch Dark Shadows will love it,” Kathryn told me. (We’re starting it tonight.) On the 17th of this month, she’ll be at Barnes & Noble at 86th and Lexington signing copies. Then, on August 19 through the 21, she’ll join several of the original cast members at the annual Dark Shadows festival at the Brooklyn Marriott.

Kathryn is one author who has always taken that old chestnut ‘write what you know’ to heart.  Having worked as a Playboy bunny herself in the ’60s, she interviewed over 250 former bunnies, including Lauren Hutton and Debbie Harry, for her 1999 release The Bunny Years. The book was recently acquired by Imagine Television for potential use in upcoming episodes of The Playboy Club premiering this fall on NBC. With renewed interest in the subject, Simon & Schuster is releasing an updated edition next month with a new forward written by none other than Hugh Hefner.

While Kathryn is over the moon about The Bunny Years getting a new lease on life, she is livid with one former bunny who worked with her back in the day. None other than Gloria Steinem was part of a class of seven women who trained at The Playboy Club at the same time — but Gloria’s stint was a ruse so she could write a scathing expose on the women and the club. While she didn’t identify any of the women by name, she used stories they’d shared thinking they were talking to a friend. “What kind of feminism is it when you put down the women you work with?” asked Kathryn. “All of us were just as ambitious. She knew I was a scholarship student trying to build a career in acting.” What burns Kathryn the most is that Gloria is still bad mouthing the bunnies. “I’m in warrior mode,” she told me, “because this 46 year-old rant is tiresome.” Ms. Steinem, I think you’ve met your match.

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. Hollywoodlife.com’s Bonnie Fuller and Fidelis Global’s Gerry Byrne, a Penske board member, presiding over their monthly lunch. On the guest list:  Activate’s co-founder and managing director, Michael J. WolfKatherine Oliver, commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Media & Entertainment; Ritu Trivedi of Mindshare Interactive; Tribeca Enterprise”s Jon Patricof; Estee Lauder group president John Demsey; WWD‘s AmyWicks; J. Walter Thompson CEO Bob Jeffrey; and Penske Media president Aly Racer; and the company’s head of strategy and operations, Will Lee.

2. Marie Claire’s publisher Nancy Cardone and editor Joanna Coles (Loved that Alexander McQueen dress!) with Estee Lauder’s Thia Breen.

3. Discovery ID’s head honcho Henry Schleiff. Henry tells me last night’s premiere of Big Law starring former boxer Eric Esch who returns to his hometown of Jasper, Alabama as ‘Deputy Butterbean’ to exact some big justice was “a knockout.”

4. CNBC’s Squawk Box host Joe Kernen with  his lovely wife and adorable daughter, Blake (co-author of Your Teacher Said What? with her dad). The family stopped in for a quick bite before catching today’s matinee performance of Wicked.

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Joanna Coles to Mentor for ‘Project Runway’ Spinoff

Joanna Coles, Editor-in-Chief of Marie Claire, will serve as a mentor to contestants on the upcoming “Project Runway” spinoff, “Project Runway All Stars.” According to People, the contestants are all people who have appeared on “Project Runway” before, but still haven’t hit it big in the fashion world.

Coles will be dishing out advice to the designers, much like Tim Gunn does for “Project Runway.” The winner of the show will see even more of Coles, because along with cash prizes, they get a spread in Marie Claire and will guest edit an issue.

Let’s hope Coles is working on a catch phrase as good as Gunn’s “Make it work,” because otherwise we might not watch. Okay, we’re probably (definitely) not going to watch it anyway, we’re just trying to be nice.

Rumors of Hearst Editor Being Axed Surface

Today WWD asks “Is a fashion editor’s head on the table in the Hearst Tower?” While we don’t know why that would be true, rumors can be fun (as long as they’re not about us losing our job), so let’s take a look at which editor the writer’s at WWD think is going to get fired.

Immediately ruled out is Joanna Coles, who apparently just signed a new deal to stay Editor-in-Chief at Marie Claire for awhile. There’s some guessing that it might be Cosmo’s Kate White, but the final target appears to be Harper’s Bazaar’s Glenda Bailey. Apparently things haven’t been going so well at the magazine:

Harper’s Bazaar finished the first half of 2011 down 5.4 percent in ad pages and circulation numbers so far this year are behind those of 2010. The book missed its rate base for January, February and March, according to data from the Audit Bureau of Circulations.

There’s no evidence that Bailey is going to be fired, and a few sources even tell WWD that there isn’t anything to the rumor, but good gossip isn’t always correct gossip. It just gets people talking.

Food Network Magazine Earns Top Spot on Adweek’s Hot List

The 31st annual Adweek Hot List is out this week, and grabbing the top spot is Food Network Magazine. Adweek also names Marie Claire’Joanna Coles as Editor of The Year, and unsurprisingly honors David Carey as Publisher of The Year. But back to the Hot List. As you can see from the top five, Hearst is really sticking it to Conde Nast. At least according to Adweek:

  1. Food Network Magazine
  2. Marie Claire
  3. Elle Decor
  4. Wired
  5. GQ

While being number one doesn’t mean that much, it’s certainly nice for the magazine to be recognized for its achievements. Though the way Adweek did it was sort of odd:

This is one case when Hearst’s lower-brow attitude—combined with its strategy of partnering with established personalities and platforms – has turned into a winning recipe.

Talk about a back-handed compliment. That’s like telling your friend “I like those jeans! They’re a lot less ugly than the ones you usually wear.”

Kerry Kennedy & Jackie Author Come Face To Face

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— DIANE CLEHANE

Sometimes it seems as if all roads lead to Michael’s — well, at least on Wednesdays. Today, the planets aligned to bring together folks with some interesting six-degrees-of-separation connections. I was talking to ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong who introduced me to Greg Lawrence, author of Jackie as Editor: The Literary Life of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (St. Martins). Greg interviewed over 125 writers and editors who worked with Jackie during her 19 years at Viking Press. (The excerpt that ran in Vanity Fair recently was dishy and full of colorful details of Jackie’s life as a working girl. The paperback edition comes out this summer.) Turns out Greg worked with Jackie on three books, including one with his former wife, ballerina Gelsey Kirkland. Their memoir, Dancing on My Grave, caused quite an uproar at the time for its revelations. “It was quite scandalous,” recalled Greg, smiling at the memory.

That got me thinking. Since Greg knew one of the most famous members of the Kennedy family pretty well, I asked if he thought Caroline Kennedy was really behind the campaign that got The History Channel to drop their plans to air The Kennedys mini-series. “Oh, definitely,” he told me. “Caroline is very sensitive about these things,  and since she has a documentary with ABC and a book with Hyperion planned on her own about Jackie, she was able to stop it.”

Before he could say more, Kerry Kennedy walked up to say hello to Joe (a longtime friend of the Kennedy family) unaware there was a journalist in her midst who had delved into the life of a Kennedy for fun and profit. When Joe introduced Kerry to Greg and told her about his book, I observed what appeared to be a cautiously cordial response. It must be surreal to see your relative on the cover of a book someone is holding only to find out the author of that book is the person you’re talking to, although I’m guessing  it’s not all that unusual if you’re a Kennedy.  We were saved from any further awkwardness when Henry Schleiff (who knows everyone) grabbed Kerry for a big hug and pulled her aside for a little chat.

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. Kerry Kennedy, presiding over a table of casually clad diners

2. Fox News anchor Bill Hemmer, having what looked to be a very intense conversation with uber agent Wayne Kabak

3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong with director Susan Stroman, Ed Victor and his lovely wife, Carol

4. Hudson News CEO James S. Cohen with a doppelganger power lunch pal

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WWD’s Odd Take on Hearst’s Powerful Women

WWD has a piece on the trio of female Editor-in-Chiefs at Hearst today, and it comes off as pretty condescending. The idea behind the article is fine – how well Elle’s Robbie Myers, Harper’s Bazaar’s Glenda Bailey and Marie Claire’s Joanna Coles will work together – but the execution is all wrong.

The headline “The Three Graces of Hearst” is the first mistake. The Three Graces, in Greek Mythology, are goddesses of charm, beauty and creativity. Right away the article is undermining the three editors by comparing them to something that has nothing to do with their intelligence or talents.

Then the phrase “playing nice” is used twice, as if Myers, Bailey and Coles are little girls who need to learn to share. But the worst part of the article is actually in a chart, which discusses their clothes and hairstyles. Once again, that has absolutely nothing to do with their ability to run three of the most popular magazines in the world.

If it seems like we’re being picky, just think about it: Would an article about three men EICs discuss their hair? Would a piece about powerful men even bring up something as frivolous as attractiveness? We don’t think so.

There’s plenty to talk about with Myers, Bailey and Coles, but somehow WWD manages to cover all the wrong things.

Ina Garten, Joanna Coles And The Fashion Flock

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— DIANE CLEHANE

The dreary winter weather (Will it ever end?!) didn’t keep the loyalists away from Michael’s today. There were plenty of fab fashionistas and social swans in the dining room who braved the elements in inappropriate footwear to exchange air kisses and gossip about who knows what.  The usual mix of media moguls and mavens were there, too. Here’s hoping the sun and the celebrity A-List returns next week.

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. Marie Claire editrix Joanna Coles with actor Richard E. Grant (Gosford Park, Dracula, and the upcoming The Iron Lady starring Meryl Streep) and three stylish looking folks. We  were so excited to see Richard up close and personal. (He’s blond now!) We’re dating ourselves a bit here, but he was absolutely the best Bob Cratchit ever a few years back in the TNT version of A Christmas Carol opposite another one of our favorite British actors, Patrick Stewart.

2. Literary agent Esther Newberg, enjoying soup with a handsome fellow whose face we definitely recognized but whose name escapes us.

3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong and Dorothy Kalins. I stopped by the table to check in with these two longtime friends. Joe couldn’t stop talking about last night’s screening at MoMa of The Restaurateur, the documentary about Danny Meyer by Dorothy’s husband Roger Sherman. The beloved museum, incidentally, is home to one of our favorite Meyer restaurants, The Modern. The screening was followed by a Q&A with Meyer and was a foodie’s delight, we hear. Speaking of food, Heart of the Artichoke and Other Kitchen Journeys written by David Tanis, chef at Berkeley’s Chez Panisse, and edited by Dorothy was among the nominees for the 2011 James Beard Awards announced yesterday. Congrats!

4.  Mrs. Army Archerd and pals.

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Nancy Cardone Pushes Marie Claire to The Top

Nancy Cardone, Publisher for Marie Claire, gets a lot of love from Hearst’s CMO Michael Clinton in a MIN online report. He says the addition of Cardone has lead to nothing but good things:

This is a major home-run for the company. MC had our largest ad-page and ad-revenue growths last year. Most impressive to me is how well Nancy teams up with [Editor-in-Chief since May 2005] Joanna Coles. They are always coming up with innovative ideas, and I see 2011 being equally exciting.

The numbers Clinton mentions certainly stand out. Ad pages for Marie Claire were up almost 20 percent and revenue was up about 23 percent during Cardone’s first year overseeing the magazine.

It looks like Cardone and Marie Claire have a bright future, just as long as they avoid more fat bashing.

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