Times tries new design (* updated)

Times redesignAfter an internal redesign process that has gone on for years, Sunday's Los Angeles Times will unveil a busy new look on the front page and announce a major shift in architecture: the weekday editorial and opinion pages will move to the A section. The flackage calls it an "arresting new format...aimed at providing a compelling snapshot of the day's most interesting stories via skybox spotlights and a bolder index on the front page, as well as expanding the use of larger headlines, photographs, color, and information graphics, such as sidebars, back story boxes, maps and diagrams." The most notable changes, per the Times' press release (we'll have our take later):

Skyboxes -- Appearing in the weekend and Sunday editions immediately below the Los Angeles Times flag, skyboxes -- a collection of up to three photos, illustrations or custom artwork -- will spotlight for readers some of the day's most interesting stories and features located deeper inside the newspaper.

Front Page Lead Story and Column One Feature -- Special headline treatment, including bolded and capitalized text, will help point readers to the day's top news story, which appears on the upper right-hand side of the front page. The daily Column One, which showcases a wide variety of unconventional stories, also will feature special treatment, including a color logo, italicized headline, more artwork and photographs.

Next Sunday, Oct. 29, the formal split of Calendar into two more clearly defined sections — which we told you about a couple of weeks ago — happens. It will come with some new features, including a blogs roundup. That detail follows, but first take note that the informal and unfortunate "Manhattan Project" label for the paper's big idea search (dubbed the "Manhattan Beach Project" by some eye-rolling participants) apparently now has a more official title: the Spring Street Project. Now the Calendar details:

"Movies - TV - Style" will include several new features:

* "The Performance" -- This short profile spotlights a film or television character, role, cameo or guest appearance that deserves to be noticed.

* "On The Set" -- The action and interactions behind the camera.

* "The Monitor" -- This weekly feature will keep up with television the way people really watch it.

Expanded coverage includes:

* "The Smart List" -- A highly selective guide to pop culture in the coming week -- at the movies, on television and DVD.

* entertainment on the Web -- Trends, discoveries and personalities in the online entertainment universe.

* "The Party Page" -- A photo-driven full page of Hollywood revelry and the social and philanthropic whirl of Southern California. This replaces "Social Climes."

* Expanded coverage of just-released DVDs and home entertainment by Times critics and top-tier contributors.

Arts & Music

New arts and music features will include:

* "Heard on the Blogs" -- A selective offering of chat and debates about the arts.

* "Drive By" -- A through-the-car-window look at the region's urban landscape, including its out-of-the-ordinary buildings and architectural works in progress.

* "In the Blink of an Eye" -- An occasional feature showing a still from a movie or television series containing a notable work of art.

* "In Sight" -- An image-driven art and architecture feature showcasing works or installations off the traditional museum and gallery circuit.

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