Another print publication is coming to an end. On Monday morning came reports that Interview Magazine has folded, according to announcements made on social media by those on staff. Since its launch in 1969 by Andy Warhol, Interview has been known for its extensive coverage of fashion, film, art and music, as well as many visually striking covers.
However, Interview has been facing some challenges over the past few years. In 2016, former Editor-in-Chief Keith Pollock left the magazine for an executive director role, overseeing Architectural Digest's digital content. Shortly after, other departures from the Interview team followed, including Senior Fashion and Accessories Editor Julia Gall (who is now an Accessories Director at Marie Claire).
This year has been especially taxing for the publication, which is currently in the midst of two major lawsuits. In February, Page Six reported that Interview's owner Peter Brant is facing a multimillion-dollar lawsuit from former longtime senior executive Deborah Blasucci, who claims that she was fired from her position (of more than 30 years) for making "too much money." In addition, Interview's staff was allegedly locked out of the Soho-based office by the building's manager because Brant has not paid its rent.
Also, Fabien Baron, who served as Editorial Director alongside Creative Director Karl Templer until April (both resigned), is suing Interview for about $600,000 due to unpaid invoices from 2015 to 2018, according to Page Six. Baron's wife, stylist Ludivine Poiblanc, is also owed $66,000 for her own work with the magazine. From the looks of it, the publication's end was inevitable, but it's unfortunate that it's such a messy (and expensive) one.
We will update this post as we learn more.
UPDATE, May 22, 10:00 a.m.: In an interview with CNN, Associate Editor Ezra Marcus confirmed that the publication will be closing its print and digital operations, effective immediately, as well as file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
UPDATE, May 23, 12:45 p.m.: Interview owes nearly 300 creative professionals money, according to a list of creditors reported by WWD. The individuals span from modeling agencies to writers, photographers and editors, as well as designers, artists and the Hammer Museum's curatorial department. The now-defunct publication is likely millions of dollars in debt, but a source tells WWD that a potential buyer is interested in purchasing Interview's assets. However, the magazine's visuals were not archived over time, which means the rights of all imagery belong to the photographers.
UPDATE, June 1, 2:25 p.m.: And just like that, Interview already has plans to relaunch. On Thursday, The Daily acquired a memo from Jason Nikic, the publisher at Crystal Ball Media, a company where Kelly Brant, Peter's daughter, serves as president. The memo reportedly states that Crystal Ball Media is currently in the process of acquiring Interview's intellectual property and will revive the publication with a September 2018 issue. Nick Haramis will lead the magazine's masthead as editor-in-chief, while stylist Mel Ottenberg will take on the creative director position.
"Over the coming weeks, our editorial and creative teams will on the responsibility of making this rebirthed Interview as beautiful, as creative, and as visually stunning as ever," the memo states. Crystal Ball Media, however, did not address Interview's financial situation. Perhaps we'll just have to wait and see how everything unfolds in the fall.