Chelsea Talks to Tina: Former First Daughter To Write on Trade Center Attack

Tina Brown finally got a Clinton on her payroll.

Former first daughter Chelsea Clinton, 21, has agreed to write a story for Talk Magazine about her experiences during the World Trade Center attack, a source at the magazine said.

“Chelsea Clinton is pursuing a piece for us related to the World Trade Center disaster,” the Talk source said.

The story is expected to run in the November issue of the magazine, though the publication date has not been finalized. Ms. Clinton’s piece is assigned at roughly 1200 words.

It appears that Talk approached Ms. Clinton, a Stanford graduate who is set to enter Oxford University in England later this fall to study international relations.

Though Ms. Clinton has typically kept a distance from the media, she was so troubled by the World Trade Center tragedy – and by the fact that friends of hers lost loved ones – she decided to go public with her thoughts, a friend of the former First Daughter said.

“She was so moved by the events,” the friend said. The friend added that Ms. Clinton didn’t intend to give any more interviews related the tragedy.

Chelsea Clinton was in New York City September 11, the day of the attack. In an interview with NBC’s Jane Pauley, Ms. Clinton’s mother, New York Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, said her daughter had planned to go jogging that morning around the World Trade Center plaza, but opted to go to a coffee shop instead.

“She was going to go around the towers,” Senator Clinton said. “She went to get a cup of coffee and that’s when the plane hit.”

Senator Clinton said she wasn’t able to reach Chelsea for two hours after the attack, and was afraid to tell her husband, former President Bill Clinton, who was traveling at the time.

“Bill was in Australia and he was so upset by what he was seeing on television that I didn’t want to tell him that I couldn’t find her until I found her,” Senator Clinton said. “I told him, everything’s fine, don’t worry.”

Chelsea Clinton has subsequently visited Ground Zero, the site of the demolished World Trade Center, and talked to rescue personnel on the scene.

Reached by The Observer, a spokesperson for former President Bill Clinton declined comment on anything related to Ms. Clinton and Talk magazine. The spokesperson reiterated a standing policy of not discussing anything related to Chelsea Clinton.

This is not the first courtship of a member of the Clinton family by Talk Magazine, which is edited by Tina Brown and funded in part by Miramax, the film company co-chaired by movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.

The first issue of Talk, which premiered in September 1999, included an exclusive cover story and interview with then First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton. Last year, the company’s book division, Talk Miramax Books, pursued the rights to publish Senator Clinton’s autobiography, but lost out to Simon & Schuster, which paid nearly $8 million.

Mr. Weinstein is among the most public supporters of the former First Family, having raised thousands of dollars for the former President and Senator Clinton, as well as former Vice-President Al Gore.

Ms. Brown and Mr. Weinstein also co-hosted a victory party in New York City for Senator Clinton in November 2000 along with Michael Bloomberg.

— additional reporting by Sridhar Pappu