Radhika Jones is an American magazine editor and the fifth editor-in-chief of the Vanity Fair magazine. She succeeded Graydon Carter who retired after 25 years in the role. She has formerly served as the editorial director for the books department at The New York Times, deputy managing editor of Time and the managing editor of The Paris Review.
It is hard these days to see anything but division in our politics, but some issues are still capable of bringing together unlikely allies. One example is the subject of Max Potter’s investigation “Incident to Service.” It is the story of the Feres doctrine, an obscure 1950 Supreme Court ruling that resulted in what is effectively a state of impunity for the military when it comes to negligence or dereliction of duty that leads to the injury or death of its active-duty service members outside of combat.
After the Dobbs ruling and before the midterm elections, Gloria Steinem sat down with “another crazed magazine woman,” Vanity Fair editor in chief Radhika Jones, for a wide-ranging conversation on reproductive rights, Ms. magazine, and the upcoming elections. “In a real sense, if you don’t vote you don’t...
Of all the surprises in Chris Heath’s mesmerizing cover profile of the Formula 1 icon Lewis Hamilton, the one that charmed me most is that Hamilton dislikes driving. Not on the racecourse, to be clear—there he channels the joy and dedication of an athlete who found the exact thing he was born to do (one thinks of Serena Williams on the tennis court, Simone Biles on the gymnastics floor). No, this was about being hamstrung by two-way traffic and junctions and impatient road hogs, navigating the twisty roads outside the picturesque town of Èze in the South of France, where he talked to Chris about his tumultuous season and what’s to come. Formula 1 is huge in Europe and growing its profile in the U.S., thanks in part to Netflix’s gripping series Drive to Survive, and Hamilton is in a class of one when it comes to his racing bona fides but also his grace and sportsmanship, in victory and in defeat. Here he speaks without reservation of his disappointment after a controversial call that cost him a deserved win, of the friends who pulled him out of despair, and of the fortitude that brought him to the pinnacle of achievement in the first place—the same fortitude, mixed with a healthy dose of rebellious spirit, that now carries him through.
At 27, Anne Elliot is over the hill—at least, that’s what her father thinks. The heroine of Persuasion “had been a very pretty girl, but her bloom had vanished early,” the narrator tells us, by way of introduction to Sir Walter Elliot’s middle daughter. But that description, though it masquerades as impartial, actually channels Sir Walter’s perception, and by the end of the novel, having spent much time in Anne’s excellent company, we are not surprised to discover that her charms are in full effect.
This year marks 70 years since Queen Elizabeth ascended to the throne—her platinum jubilee. She has served in her official role alongside 14 British prime ministers, from Winston Churchill to Boris Johnson, and her reign spans 14 U.S. presidents and counting. Her image circulates as currency—actual currency and the Andy Warhol variety—and the length of her tenure is now an indelible part of her legacy. Who in this day and age holds the same job for seven decades? That said, her dominion has indisputably contracted since 1952; just last year Barbados threw off its affiliation with the crown, and in March a royal visit from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to Jamaica drew calls for reparations alongside a reaffirmation of the island’s 60 years of independence. Monarchist sentiment—or sentimentality—in England is sufficiently strong that Elizabeth II won’t be the last Windsor to sit on the throne. But with Charles in the wings and a grandson and great-grandson in line, she will be Great Britain’s last sovereign queen for a good long while—and given the shrinking royal footprint, possibly forever.
Is there any artist in the world right now quite like Grimes? Musically, she’s operating on another plane; she was breaking ground in the metaverse before most of us had heard of it. As Devin Gordon observes in his cover profile, she refers to her work as “post-internet” because it’s created in an era when virtually any sound from the past is available in a click. Her current project—appropriately for someone who has been a fan of Dune since she was four—is a space opera. Then there’s her relationship with Elon Musk, known to the rest of Earth as its richest man as well as one of its most stratospherically ambitious and idiosyncratic, but who, on Planet Grimes, plays more of a sidekick role as fellow futurist brainiac, Mars aspirant, and co-parent (more on that in Devin’s revealing piece).
To mark the occasion of our 28th annual Hollywood Issue, we present the iconic Hollywood cover times eight: scenes real and imagined from the gravitational center of moviemaking, conjuring fantasies of stardom with a wink. Behind the camera for the second year in a row are conceptual artists Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari (for more on their amazing process, see here). The talent in front of their lens hardly needs introduction. Nicole Kidman ushers us inside the gates of Hollywood; Kristen Stewart lounges above the L.A. skyline; Idris Elba unites car culture and pool cool in one perfect frame…. Our cover stars are on top of their worlds. Every one of these actors is having a hell of a year, bridging art house films and epic franchises, studios and streamers, small screen and big screen. In a series of interviews conducted by V.F.’s own Delia Cai, David Canfield, Cassie da Costa, Yohana Desta, Rebecca Ford, Julie Miller, and Chris Murphy, they speak of the joys and challenges of their craft, the state of the industry, and their hopes for what lies ahead.
I visited Los Angeles a few months ago for the first time since February 2020. It was wonderful to see our Hollywood writers and editors in person and to feel the excitement around all the excellent movies coming out this fall and winter. I’ve been going to screenings in New York and have been so happy to reconnect with that state of emerging from a dark theater into the afternoon sunlight, still shaking off the imagined world you’ve inhabited for the last couple of hours. The disconnect between a city street and a cinematic universe only makes the film’s impression stronger. As a person who remembers the advent of the VCR, it still seems like a miracle that I can watch so many movies anytime at home—but, with the requisite precautions in place, I’ve been extra-glad to get back to the theater. Our Awards Insider team is covering this season as only Vanity Fair can, with daily updates on critic-bestowed honors, the state of the Oscar race, and expert insights into all the filmmaking components that come together to make a contender. Our first of two special issues this season features Belfast’s Caitríona Balfe, star of the cult favorite Outlander, whose performance in Kenneth Branagh’s film about the Troubles has brought her new acclaim and further kindled her ambitions in acting and directing.
My high school American history teacher had two turns of phrase that have stuck with me for 30 years. First, she consistently referred to our textbook by its author’s last name, Garraty. Though we never talked about John Garraty—who (I later learned) was born in Brooklyn and served in World...
This issue brings together profiles of three very powerful people. First, our cover star Dwayne Johnson, probably the only fixture of the Fast & Furious franchise whose name is coupled with presidential rumors as regularly as Idris Elba’s is with James Bond. But “Will he or won’t he” merely scratches the surface—Chris Heath’s matchless story goes much deeper into the origins and aspirations of the actor and entrepreneur also known as The Rock. Then there’s David Zaslav, the longtime chief executive of Discovery—impresario of Shark Week and Cake Boss—whose proposed merger between Discovery and WarnerMedia is the latest tectonic shift in the streaming realignment, and one that vaults Zaslav from mere giant to colossus. And there’s Katie Porter, the representative from the 45th district of California, who flipped a red district blue in 2018 to take her place in Congress, a single parent fighting for justice with her chosen weapon: a whiteboard. Hollywood, media, politics—these landscapes are in the midst of metamorphosis, and the figures in our November issue are part of the vanguard.
It’s been four years since Harvey Weinstein’s crimes came to light, kick-starting the #MeToo movement, which rippled through industries and institutions from Hollywood to the U.S. women’s gymnastics team to the Supreme Court—in some cases leading to convictions and appreciable change, in others to a dispiriting reification of the status quo.