X Marks the Variety Headline Spot

Back in 1935, Variety famously uncorked a trade headline for the ages: “Sticks Nix Hick Pix.”

This weekend, there is another striking Variety headline, but unfortunately for the publication, this particular banner scream will go down in the history books for some decidedly less clever phonetic sourcing of the alphabet’s 24th letter. By FishbowlLA’s count, there are a boffo 30 x’s crowning Karen Idelson’s item about the film industry’s switch to digital production means:

The headline appears to be a placeholder that was never updated; there’s also the possibility that this particular weekly edition article was a still-in-the-works item that was accidentally published Saturday morning at 4 a.m. We’ve contacted Variety for an explanation; if-when they respond, we’ll update the item below.

Update – 01/23/12: Shortly after we contacted Variety yesterday, the item was taken down from the website. A rep for the publication has since told FishbowlLA that the article in question was automatically posted before it was ready. The piece will be completed and re-posted in the near future… with a proper headline.