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Andrew HeiskellAndrew Heiskell
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I don't think so. I think I was being driven by the failure of Life, driven in to trying something else, and I was disappointed that the development group hadn't come up with anything. I was sort of determined to do it. I might say, if I hadn't been CEO, I have a strong suspicion that the magazine would never have seen the light of day. [laughter] It does help to be able to wander around and sort of walk in to somebody's office, and say, “How is that magazine doing now? What are your thoughts?” and so forth. I have to give credit to Dick Stolley who became the first managing editor and who really shaped it because I had some pretty lousy ideas. I wanted typewriter type rather than regular type. I got bashed down on that. I think I'd have made it fluffier than it turned out to be. I think Stolley had just the right touch. He was perfect for it, and his successors have had the right touch.


Let's just talk about one more thing. You've mentioned that the decision to close Life, to terminate Life was very difficult. Was that one of the more difficult decisions as CEO?


That was agony. That went on forever. Actually, I could tell that Life had troubles ten, fifteen years before it was folded. We tried every trick in the trade, editorially and promotionally to keep it going. It had a slight positive flurry, I think it was 1966. Then from 1966 on it went downward. Of course, you have to remember that Colliers had folded. The Post had folded. Then, finally Look folded. We were all trying to come up with ideas, when in retrospect

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