Scoop: Mag Banks on Gibson’s $900 Million Split

By Courtney Hazlett
|  Wednesday, Apr 15, 2009  |  Updated 9:15 PM PDT
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Scoop: Mag Banks on Gibson’s $900 Million Split

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Us Weekly’s cover addressing the Mel Gibson divorce is the one that stands apart from the pack.

From pirates to pregnancies, the celebrity weeklies offered up a diverse field of subject matter on this week’s covers. That diversity often results in an unremarkable week at the newsstand, but two well-played covers might change that.

While People magazine’s “Pirate drama at sea: A captain’s courage” strikes an emotional chord this week and should see big newsstand numbers as a result, Us Weekly’s cover addressing the Mel Gibson divorce is the one that stands apart from the pack.

Three reasons Us got it right:

  • Numbers on covers sell magazines. That “$900 million” in a big, yellow font will stop anyone in their tracks — even folks who aren’t fans of Gibson. It’s hard to not want to look inside to see how a person amasses such a fortune and faces the possibility of parting with half of it.
  • Even if you have no earthly clue who Mrs. Gibson is, the tagline, “Why Mel Gibson’s wife, a mom to 7, said enough after 28 years ...” makes you immediately sympathize.
  • The smaller elements on the cover tackle every other hot story of the week: Lindsay Lohan, new first puppy Bo and octuplets’ mom Nadya Suleman. There’s something in this issue for everyone.

Honorable mention goes to Star and its “Angelina Pregnant Again!” cover. There’s no question mark after the statement, no “friends say” or any other tools taken from the hedging-your-bets shed. Points go to Star for being bold, if nothing else. Star was the first magazine to break the Brangelina twin news and with this assertive cover, you can’t rule out the idea that maybe they’ve got the goods.

A day in the life of the Suleman household
Nadya Suleman confirms that she’s signed with British production company Eyeworks to do a documentary series (and not a reality show) about raising her 14 children. Cameras will visit Suleman and family six times a year until the kids are 18, Suleman told Life & Style.

In the meantime, the magazine has a glimpse of what might play out in front of the cameras in this week’s issue. According to the magazine, Suleman sets her alarm for 4 a.m., but sometimes sleeps through it, forcing the nannies — nine of them who divide the day into three shifts and work three at a time — to wake her.

“Usually, I’m very hyper and have a lot of energy, but at that time of the morning, I feel dead to the world,” she said.

Once Suleman feels alive enough to emerge from her bed, she drops her three oldest children off at school, then takes the 2-year-old twins to the park.

Around 1 p.m., the twins and her 3-year-old autistic son go down for a nap, leaving a window for Suleman to mother her eight newborns.

Once the older kids get home from school, chaos ensues, and Suleman is busy keeping house until midnight, when she tries to get anywhere from two to five hours of sleep.

 

‘From Justin to Kelly’ brought Clarkson to tears
Kelly Carlson’s fourth album, “All I Ever Wanted,” was a chart-topping success, but that isn’t enough to wipe the regret from Clarkson’s soul when it comes to her role in the 2003 cinematic embarrassment, “From Justin to Kelly.”

“I have never seen that (“From Justin to Kelly”), other than the time I had to sit through it at the premiere,” she told Rolling Stone. “I was contractually obligated to, and I fought that with tears — I did not want to do that movie.”

Courtney Hazlett delivers the Scoop Monday through Friday on msnbc.com. Follow Scoop on Twitter: @ courtneyatmsnbc.

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