Archive for Saturday, March 31, 2001

Rosie’s new magazine makes unexpected entrance

March 31, 2001


— The food and drink have been ordered, Marc Anthony will entertain and Chelsea Piers will be party central next Monday night.

But, unexpectedly, the center of attention has already made an entrance.

Rosie, the new Rosie O'Donnell magazine being unveiled at Monday's bash, was on sale this week at isolated newsstands in Manhattan ahead of its scheduled on-sale date next Tuesday.

Indeed, O'Donnell has yet to produce a complete image of the magazine on her daytime TV show, teasing her audience and fanning interest by revealing another piece of the first cover on each day's show.

But Raza Raj, a news vendor on the A-train platform beneath Penn Station, doesn't have to wait. "I got it two or three days ago," he said.

"I got it yesterday," said a colleague three stops north at the Columbus Circle station.

Both dealers said they're supplied by Hudson News Co., a major New York-area wholesaler of hundreds of newspapers and magazines. Company executives could not be reached for comment.

Jennifer Glaisek, a spokeswoman for O'Donnell, was clearly surprised when told of the magazine's early sales to the public Tuesday afternoon.

"I haven't seen it anywhere," she said. "But some newsstand people do go early, even though they're not supposed to."

Those getting a first peek were struck by how much Rosie's cover design resembles that of O: The Oprah Magazine, which has soared to more than 2.1 million in circulation since its launch a year ago.

Both magazines anchor their logos inside a box in the upper left-hand corner. And Rosie's May premiere, which runs 268 pages, features a blue pastel close to the color on O's April issue.

The Rosie cover shows O'Donnell embracing comedian Fran Drescher, whose "Triumph over cancer" gets top billing among the stories, followed by "At home with Rosie: her craft-room hideaway," "Delicious dinners, $12 and up: plus pull-out dessert recipe cards" and "Hope for last-chance kids."

"We set out to make a magazine with personality," O'Donnell, the editorial director, wrote in her first "From Rosie" letter. She wants a magazine that "celebrates humanity with humor and heart."

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