By Colin Crummy
GQ has put Conservative Party leader David Cameron on the cover of its ‘Entertainment’ issue and asked celebrities and journalists to quiz him on topics ranging from policies to pot.
The decision to use Cameron on the cover of the themed issue was, in part, a comment on the trend in UK politics towards a more entertaining brand of political presentation, said editor Dylan Jones.
"We are in an era of personality politics and the political arena is not mirroring, but is certainly becoming closer to, the American way of doing things. One of the reasons why Cameron has been accepted, not just by the media but by people at large, is because he has a very attractive manner."
He added: "We decided to do Cameron because we felt the time was right. He’s new in the job, he’s relatively unsullied, we thought we’d put him on the cover before his reputation got tarnished."
The interview, conducted by Jones, includes questions from GQ columnists Rod Liddle, Piers Morgan and Alexis Petridis, Observer editor Roger Alton, Daily Mail columnist Melanie Philips and Robin Morgan, Sunday Times Magazine editor. Other contributors include former footballer Stan Collymore and supermodel Elle MacPherson.
In interview, asked whether he felt fairly treated by the press, Cameron said: "On the whole, not too badly", and added that although there were certain frustrations as to the way comments were interpreted, "generally, politicians complain about the press like farmers complain about the weather."
A separate cover features Girls Aloud, a strategy devised for GQ’s overseas sales, as a Cameron image would not work for an international market.
"We very rarely do a double cover,"
Jones said. "Last time was four years ago. If we have someone who is a huge domestic star or doesn’t play abroad, we do another for export."
Asked whether Gordon Brown would be next for the GQ treatment, Jones added: "We’ve done Brown in the magazine before — we probably will again later on in the year. Whether he’s telegenic enough to warrant a cover, I’m not sure."