Hollywood Reporter (THR) is an American digital and print
magazine, and website, which focuses on the
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.
1.1 Early years
2 Ownership changes
3 Editors and publishers
5 Editors and reporters
6 Competition and lawsuits
7 Current status and legacy
7.1 Awards season
8 See also
10 External links
THR was founded in 1930 by William R. "Billy" Wilkerson (1890–1962)
as Hollywood's first daily entertainment trade newspaper.
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. Wilkerson's wife, Tichi
Wilkerson Kassel, took over as publisher and editor-in-chief when her
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." 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.
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. 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
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. 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
On April 11, 1988,
Tichi Wilkerson Kassel
Tichi Wilkerson Kassel sold the paper to BPI
Communications, owned by Affiliated Publications, for $26.7
million. Robert J. Dowling became THR president in 1988,
and editor-in-chief and publisher in 1991. 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.
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. It joined those publications with AdWeek and A.C.
Nielsen to form The Nielsen Company.
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 Janice 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. The
Hollywood Reporter relaunched with a weekly print edition and a
revamped website that enabled it to break news. Eight months after its
The New York Times
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."
By February 2013, the Times returned to THR, filing a report on a
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
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%.
Since January 2014, The
Hollywood Reporter has been led by
Janice Min and John Amato.
Tichi Wilkerson Kassel
Tichi Wilkerson Kassel (left) with
Sharon Stone in 2002
John Kilcullen replaced Uphoff in October 2006, as publisher of
Billboard. Kilcullen was a
defendant in Billboard's infamous "dildo" lawsuit, in which he was
accused of race discrimination and sexual harassment. VNU
settled the suit on the courthouse steps. Kilcullen
"exited" Nielsen in February 2008 "to pursue his passion as an
entrepreneur." 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
Guggenheim Partners announced on December 17, 2015 that it would sell
the Prometheus media properties to its executive Todd
Boehly. The company was sold to
Eldridge Industries in February 2017. On
February 1, 2018,
Eldridge Industries announced the merger of its
media properties with
Media Rights Capital
Media Rights Capital to form Valence
Editors and publishers
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
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
In June 2007, Rose Einstein, former Vice President, Advertising Sales
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. 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.
In April 2010, Lori Burgess was named as publisher. Burgess had been
OK! magazine since October 2008. Michaela Apruzzese was
named associate publisher, entertainment in May 2010.
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. Lynne Segall,
former vice president and associate publisher, was named publisher and
senior vice president in June 2011.
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.
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.
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. 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.
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.
Editors and reporters
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
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
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.
In December, another 12 editorial positions were cut at the trade
paper. 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, 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
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.
"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."
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 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
Variety was established in 1905 in
New York City
New York City as a weekly trade
paper, initially covering vaudeville,
Tin Pan Alley
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
days later on Friday. Then, in 1933, Variety started its
Hollywood edition, Daily Variety, to cover the film
From 1988 to 2014, Daily Variety and The
Hollywood Reporter were both
Wilshire Boulevard along Miracle Mile. In March 2007, The
Hollywood Reporter surpassed Daily Variety to achieve the largest
total distribution of any entertainment daily.
In 2011, Deadline Hollywood, a property of Penske Media Corporation,
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
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
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
Hollywood Reporter published out of the same offices on Sunset
Boulevard for more than a half century. Today, the offices are located
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
Power 100 list of the industry's most powerful
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.
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
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
Wikimedia Commons has media related to The
Nielsen Business Media
List of film periodicals
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