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Top Editor to Leave Job at Trade Journal

October 14, 1998|MARLA MATZER | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Alex Ben Block, editor of the Hollywood Reporter for nearly seven years, is leaving to take the newly created position of president of marketing for Morgan Creek Productions.

Morgan Creek is based on the Warner Bros. lot, and has produced such films as the "Ace Ventura" and "Major League" movies. Block has been the longest-standing day-to-day editor in the history of the 68-year-old entertainment trade publication.

Block joined the Reporter in 1990 as editor of special issues. He was appointed editor of the paper a year later. Though publisher Robert Dowling holds the title of editor in chief, Block is the top hands-on editor.

The Reporter is one of the two major entertainment trade dailies, along with Cahners-owned Variety. It is part of the BPI publications group, which includes Billboard and Adweek, and its ultimate parent is Dutch media conglomerate VNU.

Block will remain at the Reporter until mid-November. Dowling said no decision has been made about Block's replacement, and added that he planned to take the opportunity to reassess the entire organization.

"It's always sad to lose someone like Alex. At the same time, I think we're in very good shape and have a very solid staff," said Dowling.

Block, 52, said his position at Morgan Creek would encompass marketing, advertising and merchandising.

"I'll really be a part of the senior management team of the company . . . I've always had a dream about being inside the movie business in a hands-on way," said Block.

Before joining the Reporter, Block had worked for Forbes magazine and the Los Angeles Herald Examiner. He is the author of two books, "Outfoxed: The Inside Story of America's Fourth Television Network" and "The Legend of Bruce Lee."

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