There are currently four international editions of Vanity Fair being published; namely in the United Kingdom (started 1991), Spain, France, and Italy (started in October 1993), with the Italian version published weekly. The British Vanity Fair was first published in 1991. The Italian Vanity Fair was established in October 2003 and celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2013.
Vanity Fair Germany launched in February 2007 at a cost of €50 million, then the most expensive new magazine in Germany in years and Condé Nast’s biggest investment outside the United States. After circulation had plummeted from half a million to less than 200,000 per week, the German edition was shut down in 2009. A French version started in June 2013. The Spanish version of the magazine was first published in Spain in 2008 and it has been published monthly.
In April 2015 Condé Nast México y Latinoamerica will launch Vanity Fair Mexico.
Its publisher is still Conde Nast, but the august Madison Avenue company is now owned by the Newhouse family, which bought the troubled publishing concern in the late 1950’s and brought it to good times in the 1970’s. The new Conde Nast has seven successful magazines on its roster, advertising revenues that far outpace the industry’s, and enough extra backing from its parent company to be undaunted by the prospect that the new Vanity Fair may, at the start, be a losing proposition.
All magazines have their life cycles, but the old Vanity Fair, which between 1914 and 1936 showed the best and blithest face of American culture, seems more fondly remembered than most. George Nathan wrote about the theater. Walter Lippman discussed the world. Robert Benchley was funny on a variety of themes. Topics ranged from economics to polo to how to marry a millionaire.
In addition to its controversial photography, the magazine also prints articles on a variety of topics. In 1996, journalist Marie Brenner wrote an exposé on the tobacco industry titled “The Man Who Knew Too Much”. The article was later adapted into a movie The Insider (1999), which starred Al Pacino and Russell Crowe.
Most famously, after more than thirty years of mystery, an article in the May 2005 edition revealed the identity of Deep Throat (W. Mark Felt), one of the sources for The Washington Post articles on Watergate, which led to the 1974 resignation of U.S. President Richard Nixon.
The magazine also features candid interviews with celebrities, including a monthly Proust Questionnaire. Other notable interviews have included: Teri Hatcher, who revealed in the magazine that she was sexually abused as a child; Jennifer Aniston’s first interview after her divorce from Brad Pitt; Anderson Cooper, who talked about his brother’s death; and Martha Stewart’s first interview after her release from prison.