The fall-winter of 2008-2009 was a particularly bad time for LA movie critics. Carina Chocano was let go from the LA Times in October; the Daily News laid off Glenn Whipp in December; and Andy Klein got his walking papers from LA CityBeat in January.
Today, the LA Times announced that Whipp is joining the paper fulll-time as anchor reporter for The Envelope, “with the special mission of making the online version as compelling as the print edition.” There’s a certain level of irony there, but given that this gig comes with full benefits and a fair amount of prestige, Whipp will take it.
Fellow LA Film Critics Association member Mark Olsen, author of the paper’s Saturday “Indie Focus” column and contributor to LAT film festival coverage, has also been promoted to full-time status. In his LAFCA questionnaire a few years ago, Olsen had this advice to would-be fellow film critics:
“Please do not enter this profession expecting to become rich in a monetary sense, but it will push you as a person in ways you likely cannot expect. Also, there will, if you’re lucky, be crazy-ass moments when you’re utterly pinching yourself knowing that your 15-year-old self just had his/her mind totally blown. (Your 15-year-old self will also sometimes frown and be scornful of the very grown-up compromises and decisions you will be forced to make. But maybe it’s better to forget that kid.)”
Today, Olsen’s 15-year-old inner teen is no doubt hooping and hollering. Along with Whipp and Olsen, the LA Times also announced that contributor Meredith Blake has been promoted to the choice perch of New York-based entertainment staffer. Congrats to all.