Thursday, April 18, 2024

Golden Globes: The Days of Lavish Studio Parties After the Show Are Over, Replaced by One Soiree


One thing about the Golden Globes: even if the show was bad or boring, the after parties in the Beverly Hilton were spectacular.

First stop was right downstairs at the pool, where HBO threw a lavish spread that started in Cafe 55, the hotel restaurant, and spilled out onto the enormous plaza. That’s where I found Ricky Gervais, a couple of times after he hosted the show and caused merry mayhem. It’s also where all the HBO stars from shows like “The Sopranos,” “Sex and the City,” “Hacks,” “Game of Thrones,” etc would be chowing down. There was nothing livelier or more fun.

This year: HBO has opted out. In its place. Billboard magazine — owned by Eldrige Industries and Todd Boehy, also the owner of the Globes and Dick Clark Productions — will throw the one big shindig of the night.

This means no Warner Bros/In Style party in the big side ballroom of the hotel. It was always a crowd pleaser. One year, Prince played there. Over many years, Miramax, then the Weinstein Company, took over Trader Vic’s downstairs and on the opposite plaza from the HBO party. That’s obviously gone. Netflix took over the space, and then moved it to the lot across the drive way.. Not this year.

On upper floors of the hotel, the partying was just as good. Long lines used to form for the elevators to Universal Pictures and Sony Pictures soirees. They were packed with stars of their shows mingling and swingling. Again, they are just a memory. Also long gone are the 20th Century Fox parties. They were always a presence at the long ago demolished site of the Robinson’s department store.

Even more recently, there were also options of parties just down the way at the Hilton’s swanky new sister hotel, the very expensive Waldorf.

But now again, it’s just the Billboard party. There are a few things on the schedule around town, but quite small and mostly private. The days of wine and roses are over. The most fun was picking up a group of people you know and snaking around in a conga line from event to event. “Were you downstairs? Were you upstairs? Who was there?” And so on. Now we’ll watch from the East Coast, getting over some kind of snowstorm, glad to have the memories.

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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