In the past two years, Variety has lost an astonishing number of reporters and editors. The first waves were layoffs. The latest wave has been voluntary.
January 2009 brought a set of layoffs that included reporters and editors Mike Jones, Anne Thompson, Alys Marshall, Phil Gallo, Andrew Barker, Byron Perry, Lisa Weinstein, Diane Garrett, Martha Hernandez, Ben Fritz and Jeff Sneider.
It was one in a series of layoffs at the trade. But it wasn’t the last. In April, Peter Bart was moved from editor-in chief to become a columnist. Tim Gray took that spot. Executive Editor Michael Speier was laid off. (This list overlooks the wholesale replacement of the company’s business leaders: Variety publisher Charlie Koones, marketing chief Madelyn Hammond, and Reed Business Information CEO Tad Smith.)
A year later the critics were cast out – film critic Todd McCarthy, a 31-year veteran (pictured left), theater critic David Rooney and Derek Elley.
Many others were let go previously, and still more have left since, including most recently Dana Harris and Pam McClintock.
Who Left, and Where They Went:
Leo Wolinsky was hired as Daily Variety editor in December 2009, let go in November 2010.
Anne Thompson, reporter, laid off, went to indieWIRE.
Reporters Jeff Sneider, Dan Frankel, laid off, went to TheWrap.
Ben Fritz, laid off, went to the LA Times.
Dade Hayes, assistant managing editor, was let go, went to Rubenstein PR
Reporter Tatiana Seigel left to focus on motherhood
Tv editor Joe Adalian left to TVWeek then TheWrap and then Vulture
Reporter Mike Fleming was lured to Deadline.
Executive editor Mike Speier, laid off, went to TheWrap then Disney PR then Deadline then (apparently) to-be-launched TVLine
Reporter Nicole LaPorte, off book leave, to The Daily Beast
Party reporter Bill Higgins was hired away by THR
Film critic Todd McCarthy, laid off, went to indieWIRE and then THR
Theater critic David Rooney, laid off, to THR
Editor Dana Harris to indieWIRE
Film reporter Pamela McClintock to THR