OK, how's this for a burn? Right before all that Wired crap we wrote about earlier started going up on their site, we decided to interview Charlie Kaufman for our October Issue. I know, great minds etc. Anyways, want to know how long it took us? Five days. Start to finish. That is approximately 1/20th of the time it took them to come up with the exact same story (even the lengths are within 100 words of each other) and we will bet you $10 ours turns out a million times better and more interesting than the lukewarm pile of fluff incubating over on their site. Here's a breakdown of the process.
We'd recreate the whole paper trail between the interviewer and editorial staff for you, but there isn't one. The interviewer, Eddy, walked over to the editor, Jesse,'s desk and said "Hey, do you want me to interview Charlie Kaufman for the mag?" Jesse said "OK," and then the next time they spoke was when Eddy emailed him the finished product.
Eddy called Spike Jonze and got a number for Kaufman, then called his people and asked for a time. Sometimes this part can drag on for a couple of days while you go back and forth with dates and times but in this case it took no more than 20 minutes.
To prepare for the interview, Eddy took a shower, then took a cab to the hotel Kaufman was staying at. They talked for a little over an hour while Eddy recorded the conversation on a tape.
It’s true that Kaufman refuses to sit for photo shoots, so we decided to get four forensic artists to sketch him based on a description from the interviewer instead. This entailed the following: googling the words "forensic artists," and emailing the ones who came up and seemed good/interesting. Our editorial assistant Rocco sent a form letter to about 20 of them and responses started rolling in within the hour. We picked the four we liked best, set a price, and a day later the first sketch (which was fucking hilarious, by the way) arrived in Rocco's inbox with two more shortly behind it. The hardest part of the whole thing was cornering Eddy and making him select different facial features from an official forensic composite book and that took a little less than an hour. Our design guy had all four sketches within five days, and that's only because the last guy was on vacation. He had the layout ready by the end of the day.
Eddy came back to the office and gave the tape to Rocco to transcribe. Two hours later Rocco sent Eddy the text, Eddy popped an intro on it, and emailed it to Jesse.
Jesse spent a little bit of time that night cleaning up the text and trimming a few of the questions and answers down. When he was done he sent it to our design guy who dropped it into the layout with the pictures. And that, lads and ladies, is how you make an article.