Category Archives: Celebrities/Stars

Burda folds German celebrity weekly Chatter only weeks after launch

Two months! Only two months after the inception of Chatter, Burda’s latest celebrity weekly for young people, it must come to an end.  The magazine circulated an average of 220 000 copies a week over the summer test period, which wasn’t enough to satisfy the publisher’s expectations.  Burda was banking on Chatter to become a cheap mass market tabloid weekly sold for only 0,70 cents, but the title never met its audience.

What’s to learn from this experiment? The youth are online and do not read print even when the title is supposed to cater to them. It’s also probably difficult to publish a weekly that focuses on celebrities since hot news and scandals come up every minute via twitter!

The 12-member editorial team will be disolved at the end of the month. R.I.P. Chatter!


Gala publishes 3D issue in France

French celebrity weekly Gala just released its last issue today September 15, which comes with a free pair of 3D glasses since the issue is exceptionally three-dimensional.  It features French 60’s pop legend Michel Polnareff at 60 with his pregnant girlfriend on the cover.

All articles and ad pages published in this issue of Gala are embedded with a 3D feature.  It is a first for the celebrity and style weekly published by Prisma Presse, French subsidiary of German media giant Gruner + Jahr! The title, which has a circulation of 268 199 copies per week, has embraced a strategy of “creative coups” after introducing a daily Gala Croisette during the last Cannes Film Festival in May for instance.  It will also publish a daily version during the Paris Fashion Week that starts on September 28 until Cctober 8, 2010.

USA: True Blood casts is posing naked for Rolling Stone

Skin is definitely in for the cast of HBO’s True Blood.

The hit HBO series, which has never shied away from showing its vampires — and werewolves and humans – baring almost all, has taken its raciness to a new level, as revealed last week.

Stripped down and splattered with blood, here are the show’s stars, Alexander Skarsgard, Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer, all posing in the nude for the September issue of entertainment magazine Rolling Stone with the headline “True Blood: They’re Hot. They’re Sexy. They’re Undead.”  More pictures from the True Blood cast.

More nude Rolling Stone covers: click here for the slideshow.

France: First official circulation figures for the new VSD magazine are encouraging










The figures following VSD’s latest redesign have just been released and while it’s too soon to judge, they are looking pretty good!  August is also not a bad month for celebrity titles with strong newsstands sales around beach resorts, airports and train stations all over Europe. 

Prisma Presse released the new version of VSD on August.  It is some times referred to as the “going back to the roots” or, meaner,  as the “last chance” version of the 30 year-old news and picture weekly.  According to its publisher, the first issue had a total circulation of 243 000 copies and about 200 000 for the second, vs. 160 494 copies on average throughout 2009 (OJD). This new editorial formula and layout has returned to the original magazine concept with a larger format, its initial logo and a lowered price (from €2,40 to €2 now).  Time will tell if this last experiment is a definite success…


France: Prisma’s new management has many new magazine projects in the pipeline

As previously reported, the German magazine giants Axel Springer Verlag and Gruner + Jahr have teamed up for the first time to launch a new magazine concept called Voilà in France.  The French G+J subsidiary Prisma Presse has been in charge of editorial, development and ad sales whereas ASV France’s Publications Grand Public is the de facto publisher and distributor of the new celebrity title, which was introduced early July and comes out every other week.

Prisma has most likely been tapping editorial insights into its celebrity magazine division, which already publishes Closer, Gala and Voici.  And Springer is making good use of its tight relationship in the distribution area with France’s major supermarket chains where most of the French Springer mass titles (Télé Magazine, Vie pratique gourmand, Vie pratique madame, etc.) are sold.

And it’s apparently not the only innovation happening over at Prisma since the new managing tandem of General Director Pierre Riandet (from G+J HQ in Hamburg) and President Rolf Heinz (from G+J Mondadori in Milan), which replaced Fabrice Boé and Jean-Pierre Caffin at the end of 2009 in Paris. Indeed, the news & picture weekly VSD has been redesigned and will be published in a larger format (245 W x 332 L) from August 5 on, just as it was when the magazine started 23 years ago under founder Maurice Siegel.

Prisma also plans to adapt its successful trendy German magazine NEON for the French market with a possible test issue in 2011.  NEON is a news & lifestyle mag that caters to young urban people in their 20’s and 30’s for the most part.

Lastly, the G+J flagship title GEO will be redesigned as well in the near future (September/October 2010 supposedly).

Middle-East: Grazia to launch new English-language edition in Bahrain with ITP

Mondadori and ITP have signed an agreement for the publication of the Bahrain edition of fashion magazine Grazia, which is expected to hit the newsstands in September.

Edited by Kerrie Simon, Grazia Bahrain will be published monthly in English and will be the only English-language weekly luxury fashion magazine in the Middle East. The mix of exclusive and attention-grabbing A-list news, combined with an inside track on local and international style, makes Grazia a must-read for fashion lovers across the region. In their own words, readers are “addicted” to the weekly fix of fashion that Grazia guarantees

Circulation for the new foreign edition of the Italian magazine brand is expected to be over 10 000 copies per issue and it will be distributed both through newsstands and at large-scale retail outlets with special display stands.

The Bahrain edition will operate alongside Grazia United Arab Emirates, which was launched (also under a licensing agreement with ITP) in November 2005.

The cover price of Grazia Bahrain will be BH1 (or about €2).  Click to download full media kit in PDF.

USA: “Skyboxx”, a new sports magazine with strong focus on the Miami Heat, to launch this August

The Miami-based founders of The Source and Hip Hop Weekly are betting that LeBron James and his new team, the Miami Heat, will be so popular nationally that 20 or more pages of Heat coverage every issue will attract readers from all over the country.

“The Miami Heat are poised to become a franchise on the level of the New York Yankees, the Dallas Cowboys, the Showtime Lakers of the ’80s — teams that have broad appeal, that have followings beyond their local markets,” said David Mays, publisher of Hip Hop Weekly, which he started along with Raymond “Benzino” Scott.

As told to AdAge, the first issue of the monthly magazine, called Skyboxx and arriving on August 3, is almost entirely devoted to King James, whose Cavaliers uniform on the cover can be peeled away to reveal a Heat jersey underneath.

The new magazine is also meant to skew slightly more female than other sports magazines in the U.S. by including significant amounts of style and lifestyle coverage. Women make up 23% of the Sports Illustrated audience, 21% of ESPN the Magazine‘s audience and 17% of the Sporting News audience, according to a recent round of GfK MRI research.

“You’re going to get good sports journalism but you’re going to get it meshed with a celebrity weekly format that will attract a broader audience,” he said. “When I say format I mean the look and feel of those magazines — shorter stories, bigger pictures, more provocative headlines and lots of style and lifestyle photos.”

However, there are still many out there who doubt this strategy.  The Yankees, Cowboys and Lakers are brands that took Continue reading