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Readying the Full-Court Press

As the royal wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton approaches, American media plots an onslaught of coverage.

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Katie Couric

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People Magazine

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Harper's Bazaar

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WWDStyle issue 03/30/2011

CNN’s coverage won’t be quite as intense, although Piers Morgan and Anderson Cooper will anchor their nightly programs from London in the days leading up to the event. (At least Morgan is British.) Along with Richard Quest, CNN International’s business correspondent, they will anchor live programming. Kiran Chetry will co-anchor “American Morning” from London from April 25 to 29.

At Fox, the effort is much more conservative, no pun intended, although all the big names will be there. Shepard Smith and Martha MacCallum will host programming in London on April 29 starting at 4 a.m. Greta Van Susteren and Gretchen Carlson are expected to be in London, although it’s unclear what their assignments will be. Additional reporters who will fly across the pond include Greg Palkot, Amy Kellogg and Jonathan Hunt.

“CBS Evening News” anchor Katie Couric, who is in negotiations about her future with the network, will have live coverage of the wedding from 5 a.m. to 9 a.m., and she’ll report the evening news from London from April 27 to 29. “The Early Show” co-anchor Erica Hill will report live from there from April 25 to 30. Millie Martini Bratten, editor in chief of Brides, is scheduled to appear on “CBS Sunday Morning” and blog for BBC America.

TV networks aren’t the only ones cashing in, though. The dailies worldwide are bound to go big, with The New York Post having the advantage of being the sister paper of The Times and The Sun in London as part of Rupert Murdoch’s global media empire. Then there are the celebrity weeklies. A royal wedding translates into big money at the newsstand, and no single title knows that better than People, since five of the weekly’s top ten best-selling covers of all time featured royals. It will publish a special issue the week after the wedding, which will be on newsstands for two weeks. The title will also put out a newsstand-only special issue, with all of the details and photos surrounding the couple’s courtship, engagement and wedding, on May 27, and will launch an iPad app based on the newsstand book “The Royals: Their Lives, Loves and Secrets,” which was updated in 2010 with a second printing. It will be on iTunes, beginning today, for $7.99.

Us Weekly is planning two special issues, called “bookazines.” The first was released on Friday and the second will be published right after the event. A spokesman said the London bureau will handle the bulk of the reporting, but some reporters from the U.S. will also fly out. American Media Inc. has just released two royal wedding special issues, edited by Star magazine and the National Enquirer.

As for the newsweeklies, Time will publish a special issue and Newsweek will put out a commemorative issue, on sale the Monday following the wedding. Tina Brown will be in London on behalf of Newsweek and The Daily Beast and pitch in as a special contributor for “Good Morning America.”

Vanity Fair contributor Nicky Haslam, one of London’s most social socials, will blog for the magazine’s Web site. But Harper’s Bazaar appears to be the lone fashion title that is actually sending an editor to London to cover the wedding firsthand. Executive fashion and beauty editor Avril Graham will blog her way through the day for harpersbazaar.com.

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