LAT deputy film editor and genre buff Gina McIntyre, editor and contributor on departing staff writer Geoff Boucher's The Hero Complex, is officially taking over the blog. Boucher was lured away by EW.
I liked working with McIntyre at The Hollywood Reporter, where she spent seven years in special features, winding up as managing editor. The Indiana U journalism grad does speak geek--after all, she edited an "X-Files" fanzine in Chicago, wrote for "Cinescape," and founded the magazine "Wicked," targeted at female horror fans.
But can she effectively replace Boucher? I'm sure that McIntyre will be able to run a strong blog, lure other LAT film staffers such as Boucher protege Noelene Clark, Rebecca Keegan, Steven Zeitchik, Mark Olsen and Nicole Sperling to contribute, and make the genre content sing.
But will she be able to step up and become a star? That's what larger-than-life Boucher did: he walked the line between objective journalism and fandom, engaging readers via his graceful understanding of social media and events such as his high-profile screening series. She's also taking over the Hero Complex Facebook Page and Twitterfeed.
"Geoff and I had complementary sensibilities, comic book collections and knowledge," says McIntyre. "I filled in the gap on horror films and cult cinema, where maybe he wasn't quite as well-versed. Everyone realizes that The Hero Complex is great."
It will take McIntyre some time to sustain and advance the brand without Boucher. Traffic is down since he left, but it would be anyway, she says, because eyeballs peak during popcorn season, when Marvel and DC reign at the box office--not the fall.
The LAT entertainment staff generates plenty of content for the print edition, some of which feels right for Hero Complex, says McIntyre, who will break some things there first as she did with her Tim Burton set piece on "Frankenweenie."
She has no plans to reinvent the wheel, but wants to build the audience by bolstering videogame and genre fiction coverage while continuing to write about films, TV, and comic books via "in-depth interviews with interesting people and top quality journalism about genre," she says. "Which is why Hero Complex was so successful--the level of the material and its depth and insight. 'Hero Complex' for me has more of a magazine feel. It's content you want to spend a lot of time with, not constant quick hit posts, although we do want to make sure there's fresh content for people to come to."