Saturday, May 25, 2024

Anna Wintour Plans Next Met Ball, But Expenses for 2017 Gala Exceeded Met’s Grants and Fellowship Program by Almost $2 Million


Time for another Met Ball! Anna Wintour announced it today. Has something to do with clocks.

The annual spring Halloween party at the Metropolitan Museum is costing more than ever, it seems. For the 2018 Ball, according to the Met’s Form 990, called “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination,” the direct expenses were $4.1 million– a $300,000 increase from 2017. And get this: the total amount the Met spent on grants and fellowships in 2018 came to just $2.7 million– down from $3.44 million the previous year.

Is there something wrong here? Shouldn’t the Met Ball be self-sufficient? What’s the point of having it?

Gross income from the 2018 Costume Institute gala was just $302,500. Total receipts came to $13.1 million. Revenue less contributions was $12.8 million. The Ball is a lot of effort that doesn’t produce much revenue and shows a loss on the Form 990 for Met fundraising projects of over $5.5 million.

Who knows? By the time May 4th rolls around, Anna’s guests may all be wearing Christian LaCroix face masks! The co-chairs for this year: actresses Emma Stone and Meryl Streep, Hamiltoncreator Lin-Manuel Miranda, and Louis Vuitton’s creative director, Nicolas Ghesquière. I’m sure they’ll come up with something. But isn’t there some sponsor to pay off that $4 mil in expenses?


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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