The new issue of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo has hit newsstands in France, with many wondering who they’ll be able to get a copy in the United States and Canada.
The majority of the five million print run for the first issue after the attacks on the magazine are being distributed in France, with thousands of others being sent to the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Spain, and other European countries.
But obtaining the issue in the United States and Canada will likely prove more difficult, as distribution plans are up in the air for stores that want to stock the issue. However, at least some are going to make it happen.
“We’re getting a few copies for the U.S.,” said Martin McEwen, the executive vice president of press distribution for LMPI, a distributor of foreign magazines and newspapers in the U.S. and Canada.
“As part of the magazine’s first run, we will receive 300 copies, and these will be distributed between Friday and Tuesday in New York, San Francisco and some major French magazine retailers across the U.S.,” he told Time.
LMPI has requested a second shipment of a few thousands copies.
“But we’re waiting to see how many [the French distributor MLP] is going to make available to us,” McEwen said. “There’s a huge demand for the magazine in France and Europe, and the publisher will be prioritizing these markets.”
Louis-Philip Vermeersch, director of sales for LMPI, told CBC that 1,500 copies will be available in different parts of Canada, including several Gateway newsstands in Toronto, several establishments in Quebec, and several others in Vancouver.
Back in the U.S., magazine shops and newsstands across New York City are trying to get their hands on issues, as are other retailers.
“We are actively and energetically trying to facilitate distribution among our members,” Dan Cullen, senior strategy officer at the American Booksellers Association, which represents hundreds of independent U.S. booksellers, told U.S. News & World Report.
Another potential vendor, the Politics & Prose bookstore in Washington, D.C. said it’s also trying to get copies to meet customer demand.
“We’d certainly be interested in having that on our shelves,” said Lena Little, the store’s director of marketing and publicity. “We’re just waiting to see if that will be possible.”
Others, though, will not be distributing the magazine. “We don’t carry the magazine and we don’t have plans to carry it.,” said Mary Ellen Keating, a senior vice president and spokeswoman for Barnes & Noble. A Hudson News representative also said the chain will likely not supply the magazine.
Despite earlier rumors, the French Consulate in New York City does not have any copies available.
The best place to get the magazine now may be on eBay, Amazon, and similar websites, although most issues are going for hundreds of dollars.
Michel Salion, a spokesman for MPL, which distributes Charlie Hebdo, told Reuters that the requests internationally have been growing fast.
“We have requests for 300,000 copies throughout the world – and demand keeps rising by the hour,” Salion said.
The paper usually has just 4,000 clients outside France, he added.
Normally, 60,000 copies are printed, with about half of those sold.