EXCLUSIVE: David Carr steps down and Melena Ryzik steps in as the new lead writer starting December 1st of The New York Times‘ “Carpetbagger” awards season blog covering the Oscar, Golden Globes, Sundance Film Festival, and other movie campaigns. She is a general assignment culture reporter who chronicles NYC life for The New York Times‘ “UrbanEye”, which is a video series and daily email events guide. Ryzik will also continue the Carpetbagger video series, which Carr launched on NYTimes.com. (Remember this one? NYT’s David Carr May Have Lost His Mind) Additional reporting for the blog will come from several other NYT journalists, including LA-based Michael Cieply and Brooks Barnes. The UrbanEye video series will go on hiatus during Carpetbagger season; the UrbanEye e-mails will continue. So, after four seasons on the Red Carpet, David Carr who originated the blog now retires his tuxedo. These days, the media columnist and general assignment reporter primarily blogs for the NYT‘s “Media Decoder”.
So now the question is whether the “Carpetbagger” blog can be franchised. Its name was not only a play on Carr’s but also captured the notion of a NYC elitist coming to Los Angeles to poke fun at the film folks. His first year, Carr had a naive take on all thing Hollywood. But by the last year, he was as jaded as the rest of us. What never changed was Carr’s obvious delight in being treated like a celebrity by the movie PR machine, including at The New York Times which benefited advertising-wise from Oscar buzz. Carr was great for the blog, and the blog was great for Carr. Can Ryzik duplicate his success?