“We’re not really in search of public college varieties,” stated his interlocutor.
Callan reminded him that the IPC chairman, Cecil King, had been educated at Winchester.
“However he’s the guv’nor … You’re not making use of for his job, are you?” “Not at this interview, no,” stated Callan. He was not supplied the place.
In 1971 he was poached from the Normal by David English, the brand new editor of the Day by day Mail, the primary middle-market paper to recognise the stirrings of the brand new celeb tradition, relaunched as a tabloid geared toward attracting girls readers. Callan’s temporary was to focus on tales about marital rifts, a throwback to the discredited methods of the late Fifties. As one Fleet Road commentator remarked, Paul Slickey was again on the typewriter.
His formidable deputy Dempster gave no quarter, and routinely saved the most effective tales to himself, usually working them on Callan’s days off so as to reap the glory. After two years on the Mail, Callan switched to Punch, the place he wrote a weekly gossip column, earlier than becoming a member of the Mirror in February 1975.
In 1978 he revealed a kids’s ebook, Gladwyn Goes To City, concerning the Queen’s corgis. From gossip columns, Callan within the Nineteen Eighties progressed to celeb interviews. Over 40 years, he interviewed dozens of visiting Hollywood stars in addition to members of the British Royal household.
Presumably apocryphally, he was credited with the shortest interview ever revealed. Assembly the reclusive Greta Garbo on the Lodge du Cap Eden Roc close to Cannes, he received so far as “I ponder …” earlier than Garbo lower him useless with “Why surprise?” and stalked off. The story made a full web page within the Mail.
Callan additionally returned to radio. With the journalist Janet Road-Porter, he introduced the mid-morning present on LBC when it launched in 1973, the urbane Callan pitched towards his estuarial-sounding accomplice with accents recognized respectively as “cut-glass” and “cut-froat”.
She thought of him “a snooty slimeball, one thing out of P G Wodehouse” and moaned about his suede sneakers, the stench of his French cigarettes and his ceaseless harping about his homes within the nation and in “city”.
“Day in and time out,” Janet Road-Porter recalled, “the morning was spent settling scores and trashing one another’s style in every little thing from meals to décor to music to vogue. The listeners have been riveted.”
Within the early Nineteen Nineties Callan introduced the weekly Celeb Selection on Basic FM with visitors starting from Henry Kissinger to Harry Secombe.
Paul Callan married, in 1973, the New York journalist Steffi Fields, London correspondent of the style bible Ladies’s Put on Day by day and later information editor on the London bureau of the NBC tv community. They’d two kids, James, and Jessica, someday deputy editor of the Day by day Telegraph’s Peterborough column, who grew to become a 3AM Lady gossip author on the Mirror and in 2019 was appointed deputy editor of Hey! journal.
Paul Callan, born March 13 1939, died November 21 2020