- From Internet shitstorms to drinking with actor Ray Winstone, Port’s editor takes us through a year of ups and downs (and ups)…
This year, our third since launching, started with a hangover: guest editor of our Film Issue, Daniel Day-Lewis, commissioned for it an interview with his old pal Ray Winston. I arranged with Ray to meet at one of his beloved restaurant haunts in Liverpool Street for lunch, thinking that a bit of banter over a bite to eat would be just right.
The ‘interview’ lasted 12 hours, featured several bottles of wine, perhaps hundreds of Vodka and Cokes on Ray’s part, walk on parts from some of his old mates (‘faces’, as he says) and other aspects which I shall omit here for reasons of… decency. A charming and talented storyteller, I laughed more than I could breath, which made getting the food down quite difficult. In the afternoon at some point Day-Lewis called, wondering how it was going. Ray took the phone from me and intoned slowly and in a sinister voice “I’m gonna take him out to my favourite pubs in East Laandon, I’m gona get yer man smashed right up!”Right: Ray Winstone
Photography Jamie Morgan
- Assuming that was going to be the whiz-bang issue for the year (the month we came out, Day-Lewis won his third Oscar) we sauntered casually towards the ‘editors’ summer issue. The idea was simple: put the editors of the magazines we held in the highest regard on our cover. We asked the editors of Vogue, GQ, New York Times Magazine, Esquire, Vanity Fair, Bloomberg Businessweek, The New Yorker and New York. (We noted the US bias, but what the hell.) All said yes apart from Vogue (which was a shame, we wanted Anna Wintour on the cover). Getting the remaining lot into one room for the cover shoot was not easy, but it happened.
There were several other pieces in the issue that we were excited about, such as Joyce Carol Oates’ open letter to Marlon Brando (in hell!), a living female literary icon addressing, and dressing down, a dead male one. It’s one of the strongest issues we have ever run but the Internet didn’t agree one bit: we were evil, we ran a cover with an all-male, and all-white, cast, and we should perish because of it. Even though the issue had yet to be published (at the time just the cover was available online) fierce feedback ensued: hate letters, discussions, forums, other editors writing about it in their magazines, a story on CNN, it really got people talking. Just about 99% of this feedback was from the US. One hopes that most people realised we ran those editors not because of their race or gender, but because of the titles they were editing.Photography Stefan Ruiz
Cover art direction & design Matt Willey
- Probably the most rewarding issue to have worked on thus far is out now, featuring Chiwetel Ejiofor on the cover, an extraordinary actor, and man. This winter issue really does do what we set out to achieve with Port: to offer a diverse range of stories, some to snuggle up to and savour, some to read in shocked silence, some to inspire awe, some simply to make you laugh. A lot. All given the space they need.
And of course we have Port Online, which continues to grow and dynamically offers another take on the magazine, with more frequent stories and podcasts.
It’s been a busy year, and hope it has been for you too. I’d like to thank you for your feedback and support, and wish you a very happy Christmas.Photography Gareth McConnell
Styling David St John-James
Dan is Port’s editor-in-chief
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