As Tina Brown finally gets around to building up a new pop culture vertical for The Daily Beast (in time for Oscar season), her diminutive west coast bureau chief Gabe Doppelt has beefed up The Beast's entertainment coverage with ex-LAT TV editor Kate Arthur
and now ex-Variety reporter
Nicole LaPorte (above), who has turned in her still untitled book on DreamWorks to Houghton Mifflin. LaPorte, whose first story covers the women's surf tour
, is the Beast's senior west coast correspondent. She'll be working out of the L.A. office, "covering more culture stuff," she writes in an email, "movies mostly, from a more feature-y angle; also weird, fun stuff."
Meanwhile KCRW-radio host Kim Masters continues to cover the business of entertainment for The Beast, dealing directly with New York.