The New Yorker magazine is readying a yearlong "aggressive exposé" on the shady tactics of gossip tabloid TMZ.com. The article by writer Nicholas Schmidle has Levin and his bosses at Warner Brothers very nervous, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Levin is allegedly warning staffers both past and present not to speak to Schmidle.
Sources tell THR that The New Yorker is finalizing its own aggressive exposé — more than a year in the works — about the unorthodox reporting tactics of the Warner Bros.-owned TMZ and its controversial founder. Source
And Warner Brothers is anxiously awaiting a courtesy fact-checking phone call from The New Yorker so they can determine what the article will be about.
Levin and TMZ are not often discussed on Time Warner earnings calls, but by most accounts the outlet is said to make tens of millions of dollars for Warner Bros. each year, mostly from the syndicated TMZ newsmagazine television show, which Levin hosts. The former lawyer's ability to procure court documents, celebrity death and divorce news, sex videos and other unflattering tidbits have led to speculation — especially in L.A.'s legal community, which often grapples with TMZ — that the outlet is paying sources handsomely. Source
One reason why Levin might be nervous is the persistent gossip about his sexual proclivities for certain young men.
The full article will appear in the August 14, 2015 issue New Yorker magazine.