UK mag Hello! turns back on celebs in bid to go up-market
London: Hello! magazine has decided to re-establish themselves as women’s “lifestyle and fashion” weekly, after announcing that they will no longer be reporting celebrity gossip.
We wanted to “move away from the celebrity sector and its obsession with made-up stories, scurrilous gossip, poor production values, real-life stories and low cover price,” the Telegraph quoted the magazine’s publishing director, Charlotte Stockting, as saying.
In a veiled attack on its longstanding rival, OK magazine, she said that it would now sit alongside lifestyle magazines such as Grazia and Red, rather than “downmarket weekly celebrity titles.”
The magazine had been launched in 1988 by Spain’s Sanchez Junco family, who also owned its Spanish and Mexican equivalents, Hola!
The publication quickly gained a reputation for paying hefty fees in exchange for access to celebrity’s homes and reverential interviews about their glossy lifestyles. It also spawned a slew of imitators like Ok! and Now!.
In 2000, OK had famously outbid Hello! for the rights to photograph Welsh actress Catherine Zeta Jones and film star Michael Douglas’ wedding, paying 1m pounds for access.
However, the magazine smuggled a photographer in regardless and ended up paying more than 1m pounds in damages to the couple and OK! magazine.