L ATimes Expands Calendar Weekend


The LA Times, in an effort to hold on to those younger readers, younger being anyone born after the Kennedy assassination, revamps the Thursday Calender section. From John Montorio’s memo:

Thursday, we’ll raise the curtain on an exciting double feature, when we replace Weekend with two new sections—a Calendar broadsheet devoted to the movies and a freshly imagined tabloid, The Guide, designed to help readers make the most of their recreational, cultural and entertainment choices.

Whee. We’re dizzy at the prospect. Betsey Sharkey gets two lieutenants in her campaign, who are cutely called a “power couple”:

Tim Swanson, Film Editor. Tim, a former editor at Premiere and writer at Portfolio, will directly oversee our movie coverage.

Gina McIntyre, Assistant Entertainment Editor. Gina, who most recently was an editor and writer at The Hollywood Reporter, joins us later this month. She’ll be helping to shape our TV, film and pop music coverage.

And the real reason for the two sections comes from Lynne Segall, LAT veep of entertainment and fashion advertising:

The Thursday broadsheet will now give the studios a broader canvas on which to market their films on the most crucial day to promote weekend movie-going

The Guide will also launch online in a beta version as early as mid-November. Ultimately replacing Calendar Live, the site will feature user-generated content, as well as content from an expanded staff, who’ll work more cheaply than those folks already in the building.

Perry Crowe, Associate Editor. As a longtime freelance writer, Perry covered everything from hard news to the arts. He’ll oversee The Guide’s coverage of the performing arts, restaurants and activities for kids.

Mindy Farabee, Staff Writer. Mindy has been a freelance journalist specializing in cultural affairs for a variety of publications, including CityBeat.

Charlie Amter, Content Producer. Charlie has written extensively about music and LA’s bars and clubs for Weekend and will continue to do the same for The Guide.

August Brown, Content Producer. Regular readers of Weekend and Calendarlive.com will be familiar with August’s music coverage, which they’ll now find in The Guide.

Jessica Gelt, Content Producer. Jessica began her career at The Times as a fact checker for West Magazine before graduating to Assistant Style Editor. She’ll cover restaurants for The Guide.

Jason Gelt, Content Producer. Jason worked as a city editor for AOL’s Digital City Guide and was the Calendar Editor for LA Alternative Press. He’ll oversee family coverage (speaking of which, he’s Jessica’s older brother).

Liam Gowing, Content Producer. A former contributor to SPIN and LA Weekly, Liam comes to us from The Onion, where he served as the LA City Editor. He is our Active LA expert.

Lea Lion, Content Producer. Lea covered art for the Los Angeles Downtown News and wrote and edited restaurant reviews for Cityguide.com She will cover performing arts and art.

David Ng, Content Producer. David was freelancing for The New York Times and the LA Times before joining The Guide, where he’ll cover art, theater and classical music.

Pauline O’ Connnor, Staff Writer. Pauline’s freelance work has appeared in the New York Times, Vogue and The LA Times, among many other publications.

Enid Portuguez, Content Producer. Enid covered fashion, beauty and nightlife for LA.com and was an associate editor at Hollywood Life magazine.

Elina Shatkin, Content Producer. Elina comes to us from Laist.com, where she was movie editor.

Margaret Wappler, Content Producer. Margaret was with the entertainment news crew at latimes.com and a frequent Calendar contributor before shifting over to theguide.latimes.com. She’ll also write about movies for The Guide.