Michael Clinton began life as a menswear reporter for Fairchild's DNR, rose to the executive suite at Conde Nast, and now may have "the longest title" in the biz. At Hearst Magazines he's "executive VP/chief marketing officer/ publishing director," and we lunched at Michael's Restaurant on the day Hearst launched its latest, Weekend, with a half million press run. Clinton filled me in on what's going on in Cathleen Black's rapidly growing domain. A few snippets: Weekend will do a second test of another half mil, then decisions will be made. Quick & Simple will launch end of July. Seventeen and MTV are creating a 10-episode reality show, a "search for America's sweetheart." Cosmo in September does a promo marking 40 years since Helen Gurley Brown revived the old monthly, which under Kate White is selling close to 3 million copies. Its spinoff O at Home, says Clinton, may become the biggest shelter mag of all even without subs, selling 600,000 on newsstands. O, which Michael calls "the mother ship," is now selling 2.6 million on a rate base of 2.1 million, going up in January another 100,000 or so. Town & Country Travel is selling a quarter million copies. Shop etc. will do 10 issues this year and "is getting a great reception from advertisers and consumers." Its "power brands remain Cosmo, O and Good House." Esquire's Editor David Granger, eight years in the job, is delivering "a combo of great journalism and service," As for Harper's Bazaar, Michael blames a slump on a whispering campaign of damaging rumors, and claims, "Bazaar has now gotten its ad pages back up." By mid-2006 all Hearst titles should be housed in that new 42-story Hearst tower on 8th Ave. As for Michael himself, his pricey coffeetable book of photos went to a second printing and his latest, "Global Snaps," comes out this fall.
All the fashion mags were out in force at the Four Seasons June 13 to salute the outgoing and incoming bosses of L'Oreal, the French outfit that buys all that delicious advertising.
Was sportswriter Christopher Clarey of The New York Times watching the same French Open men's final I saw? He blathers on about winner Rafael Nadal's wardrobe, "his long white pants evoking the golden age of the game..." Young Nadal is certainly a fine clay courts player. But as for those "long" white pants, the fellow was wearing what in Brooklyn were worn by "dames" and were called Capri pants. A ban at Wimbledon? It is devoutly to be wished.
Fortune (June 13) finally put actor Michael Douglas on its cover, this time for real. Twenty years ago in Oliver Stone's "Wall Street." Douglas's character, Gordon ("greed is good") Gekko was seen on a fictional Fortune cover.
Are his own radio commercials telling an aging Billy Graham something? His "greater N.Y. crusade" starting June 24 warns, "It may be your last chance to hear this message alive and in person."
Life Publisher Peter Bauer writes me to say they're "bringing some new advertisers to the supplement laboratory." New advertisers include Hilton Garden Inn, Nikon, Schwab, Earthlink and Visa.
Jacko vows to track down those child molesters in his bed.