Arianna Taps Actress Rita Wilson To Head New 'Boomer' Vertical Huff/Post 40

rita wilson

Arianna has not lost her knack for splashy name-dropping.

The AOL Huffington Post Media Group announced today they have tapped actress (and wife of Tom Hanks) Rita Wilson to be editor-at-large of a new Boomer vertical Huff/Post 40. The site is set to launch in August.

According to the announcement Wilson will “oversee the vision and direction of the new site, including hiring its editor and team. She will also assign features, videos, and more.”   Apart from her acting credits Wilson has penned (rather good) regular columns for Harper’s Bazaar in recent years.

This is not the first Hanks connection for HuffPo.  A few years back daughter Elizabeth Hanks worked at the site as an associate editor.

Wilson’s role in shaping the vertical certainly sounds more hands on than HuffPo’s last bold-faced name hire.  Last October they announced they were launching a Divorce vertical “conceived” by founding editor Nora Ephron, who was just releasing a book about…divorce.   The last piece Ephron contributed to the site is dated November 8, 2010.

Full Wilson announcement below.

New York, NY – June 15, 2011 – The AOL Huffington Post Media Group, a leading source of news, opinion, entertainment, community and digital information, announces today that Rita Wilson has been named Editor-at-Large of “Huff/Post 40,” a site launching in August that will cover the boomer generation. In this position, Wilson will oversee the vision and direction of the new site, including hiring its editor and team. She will also assign features, videos, and more. Arianna Huffington, President and Editor-in-Chief of AOL Huffington Post Media Group, made the announcement.


“We are thrilled that Rita is joining us,” said Arianna Huffington. “Calling the site ‘Huff/Post 40’ was her idea. Her belief that it’s never too late to follow your dreams makes her the perfect godmother for Huff/Post 40 as it takes shape. As a talented actress and producer, she knows how to engage audiences and bring passion and a sense of humour to everything she does – whether it’s producing, writing, or making her singing and dancing Broadway debut in her 40s. I’m really looking forward to working with her to bring to life our shared Greek culture’s emphasis on honouring age and wisdom, and on celebrating life at every stage.”


Said Rita Wilson: “Issues related to being over 40 have always intrigued me. My mum and dad always used to say, ‘life begins at 40.’ The idea that we boomers are somehow supposed to wind things down as we get older has completely escaped me. The Over 40s I have met are some of the most interesting, vibrant, curious, courageous, sexy, energetic people I know. Exploring the minds and hearts of this group of people is exciting. It’s never too late to mix things up, change your life, to get to what you really should be doing — or want to be doing. As Mark Twain said, ‘Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.’ I can’t wait to get started. ” 


Wilson is an actor and producer who first donned her producers cap for the record breaking box-office hit, My Big Fat Greek Wedding. Wilson was honored with the Visionary Award from the Producer’s Guild of America, and the film won the People’s Choice Award for favourite Comedy, as well as Golden Globe and Oscar nominations. Wilson is also the producer of the 2008 Universal Studios film version of the hit ABBA stage musical Mamma Mia!, starring Meryl Streep and Pierce Brosnan.  


As an actor, Wilson has starred in The Art of Getting By, Larry Crowne with Tom Hanks, It’s Complicated with Meryl Streep, Old Dogs with John Travolta and Robin Williams, and starred in Beautiful, Ohio with William Hurt.  Some of her other film credits include The Chumbscrubber, with Ralph Fiennes, Raise Your Voice with Hilary Duff, Auto Focus with Greg Kinnear, The Story of Us with Michelle Pfeiffer and Bruce Willis, Runaway Bride with Richard Gere, Gus Van Sant’s Psycho, Nora Ephron’s Mixed Nuts with Steve Martin, and Sleepless in Seattle, performing in a classic scene describing the film An Affair To Remember.


On stage, Wilson recently appeared in the New York and LA casts of Nora and Delia Ephron’s play Love, Loss and What I Wore. She also appeared in the world premiere of Lisa Loomer’s DISTRACTED, directed by Leonard Foglia at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles. In Los Angeles and Boston, she starred in the Pulitzer Prize winning play DINNER WITH FRIENDS directed by Dan Sullivan. In 2006, she made a personal dream come true and made her Broadway debut as Roxie Hart in CHICAGO, THE MUSICAL.


On television, Wilson has appeared this season in The Good Wife and Law and Order SVU. Past appearances include “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Frasier”, and co-starring as Susan Borman in HBO’s Emmy award winning miniseries, “From the Earth to the Moon.”


Wilson has been a contributing editor to Harper’s Bazaar since 2006 and has also written for Oprah Magazine, as well as appearing on The Oprah Show Fabulous at Every Age, talking about style and fashion.  Rita is currently writing her first screenplay Terms Of Embarrassment for Fox 2000.


Wilson has been the honorary chair of the Women’s Cancer Research Fund for Fifteen years along with her husband Tom Hanks, Kate Capshaw and Steven Spielberg. She has also been on the board of The Shakespeare centre a non-profit theatre group in Los Angeles for over 20 years. She is mother to four children and has been happily married to the love of her life for 23 years.

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