Dennis to launch men's movie magazine in US

By Jeffrey Blyth in New York

Felix Dennis is launching a magazine in the US aimed at young male moviegoers.

The new magazine – as yet unnamed – will be tested on news-stands in May. An initial print run of 400,000 is planned. The decision is said to have been made because of the success of Maxim in the US.

Dennis: unfazed by ad deadline

However, translating its success to a new topic will put Dennis Publishing in direct competition with its European business partner Hachette Filipacchi, publisher of Premiere, one of the leading magazines in the field in the US. It will also be up against the independently owned Movieline.

Both magazines have suffered a decline of almost 50 per cent in advertising in the past couple of years. And another rival, Total Movie, folded.

Yet this does not appear to faze Dennis. The US president of Dennis Publishing, Stephen Colvin, said he believed there is still a market for a guys’ movie mag. He cited the popularity recently of such films as Spiderman, Lord of the Rings and Austin Powers – all young men’s movies. The frequency of the new magazine has not yet been decided. “It will depend on demand,” said Colvin.

Like other Dennis publications, it is expected there will be lots of photos of women. Said Colvin: “We might even have some guys in the magazine – every now and then.”

Meanwhile, Tina Brown is taking a stab at television. She has contracted to do a series of four TV interview programmes for CNBC – a small cable network offshoot of NBC that specialises in financial news. The move comes almost a year to the day since the closing of her big US magazine venture Talk.

Brown: will do four CNBC shows

The programmes will be called Topic A with Tina Brown. The first will be on the eve of the Oscars and will discuss the economics and finances of the movie industry. One of her guests is likely to be Harvey Weinstein, owner of Miramax Studios, who was a co-partner in her Talk venture. The other three programmes are expected to explore a range of topics from business to politics.

After the closure of Talk, there were reports that Brown might try out for her own talkshow. She contented herself, however, with writing a weekly column for The Times, which now also runs on Salon, a US website.

She said she signed up with CNBC because its audience was similar to the one she had at Talk. It is a small channel, with only about 250,000 regular viewers. She insisted she was not aiming for a prime-time show – at least, not yet. “I’m really enjoying my life in a slightly lower gear now.”

Jeffrey Blyth

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