A PAPARAZZI PAYDAY ON VF’S DIME

Magazine insiders say Vanity Fair is cracking down on staff security after its latest issue fell into the hands of notorious paparazzo Phil Ramey, allowing the sleazy lensman to shop around unreleased copies of its Jennifer Aniston cover to the highest bidder.

“Someone at Vanity Fair must have slipped an advance copy to Ramey, because he had the whole magazine and sent scans of all the Aniston pages to anyone who would pay,” says our source.

While most tabs passed on the Leslie Bennetts exclusive, we hear other rags, like Life & Style and the British tabloid the Sun, couldn’t wait to get their hands on Aniston’s first words about her awkward, very public split from Brad Pitt—and paid thousands of dollars for the story just days before the mag’s official Monday, Aug. 1 press release date.

“It’s a nightmare in the office,” says one VF staffer. “No one knows how this man got a copy of the magazine or how this all leaked so fast. We had a harder time keeping this under wraps than Deep Throat!”

When reached for comment, VF spokeswoman Beth Kseniak denied any prior knowledge of the leak, saying, “This is the first time anyone, including the managing editor, has heard of this Phil Ramey incident.” Ironically, Ramey was profiled in the March 2003 issue of VF in a story about the paparazzi that credited him with going to daredevil lengths to get his money shots.