Recession be damned: Oscar parties non-stop

2012-02-23 07:37

Don’t tell Hollywood’s Oscar week party organisers about a slow economy, crisis in Europe or nuclear meltdown.

The Governors Ball, where the winners go straight after the Oscar ceremony to parade their trophies – and where the losers go to drown their sorrows – will have 1 000 bottles of Moet & Chandon for the 1 500 guests, not to mention a 3D chocolate dessert that can be viewed with special glasses.

Masterminded by celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck, the event will allow guests to graze on racks of lamb chops, mini chicken pot pies, Kobe beef cheeseburgers and gold-dusted chocolate Oscar statuettes. The party will eschew the traditional sit-down dinner in favour of casual seating, tray-passed food and buffet tables.

“I think it should be a party, not just a dinner,” the Austrian-born chef told The Hollywood Reporter.

“You want people to be able to sit with whom they’d like to sit, not with some people they’ve never met.

Before, you saw one table with Francis Ford Coppola, one table with Billy Crystal, one table with Barbra Streisand, and so on. But they wanted to sit together.”

Don’t think that the Oscars are a one-night stand.

While the Governors Ball is the biggest party of Oscar week, there are plenty of other galas to entertain the stars.

There are dozens of Oscar parties all over Hollywood every night of the week, including a different party every night hosted by Vanity Fair magazine.

Other celebrations getting a jump start include the 40th anniversary of Sir Charles Chaplin’s Academy Award Black-Tie Dinner at the Chateau Marmont, and an Oxfam charity dinner hosted by last year’s Oscar star Colin Firth.

Eva Longoria is hosting two pre-Oscar parties, and star watchers can expect to see a cavalcade of celebrities at a Paramount and Grey Goose Oscar dinner at Soho House, a trendy club in West Hollywood.

Another hot ticket is the Fifth Annual Women In Film Pre-Oscar Cocktail Party, hosted by Gwyneth Paltrow and Cathy Schulman – where stars such as Octavia Spencer, Ellie Kemper, Vanessa Hudgens, Oscar throwback Gabourey Sidibe, new “Bond girl” Berenice Marlohe and 17 other female nominees are on the guest list.

Martin Scorsese will host a fundraiser at the Hotel Bel-Air for The Film Foundation, while the cream of the indie film world will show up at the backstage party Saturday night at the Independent Spirit Awards in a huge tent on Santa Monica Beach.

On Oscar night, one of the best known bashes is the Elton John Aids Foundation 20th Annual Viewing Party, which has Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry, Ellen DeGeneres, Brooklyn Decker, Jessica Alba, Kim Kardashian, Leona Lewis, Liam Hemsworth and Mena Suvari on the guest list, projected to raise more than $4 million.

Even more exclusive is the Vanity Fair Oscar night party. In the words of movie website The Wrap: “It’s a room full of movie stars.”

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