Saturday, April 13, 2024

Hollywood: Oscar Nominee Jeffrey Wright, plus Melanie Griffith, Sacha Baron Cohen, Chris Rock , Guy Oseary Turn Out for Basquiat Opening


Back in 1996, current Oscar nominee Jeffrey Wright played cutting edge artist Jean Michel Basquiat in Julian Schnabel’s movie, “Basquiat.”

So Wright — so praised for his work 28 years later in “American Fiction” — wasn’t going to miss the opening of an important new Basquiat exhibition called “Made on Market Street” at the Gagosian Beverly Hills gallery.

He wasn’t alone among the stars who turned up to see the sensational collection of paintings at the gallery.

Sacha Baron Cohen turned up with Guy Oseary on their way to Madonna’s big show downtown. For a while, Chris Rock joined them. They got an earful from East Hampton artist Bill Quigley, who was Basquiat’s pal and competitor in the 1980s.

The Gagosian Gallery filled up pretty fast even though it’s a huge space on North Camden Drive. Several hundred people queued up for entry and were still waiting until we left at 8pm.

In the meantime, familiar faces like Jane Fonda, Melanie Griffith, jewelry designer Loree Rodkin, Wendi Deng Murdoch, director Bennett Miller, artist Andy Moses, “Rustin” movie producer David Permut, entrepreneur Nikki Haskell, and lots of beautiful art world types were among those who gazed at Basquiat’s sometimes violent, always witty, takes on his tough world. (I could go back 5 times, they were so magnificent!)

The whole gang moved on to dinner next door at Mr. Chow’s, hosted by Michael Chow himself in paint splattered pants.

Others — like yours truly — headed off to dinner at the very hot spot, sleekly modern and cozy Steak 48 on Wilshire Boulevard, where carnivores are now waiting patiently for reservations to dine on steak that’s like buttah. Recently spotted there in the main table having a power dinner: former CBS chief Les Moonves hosting legendary sportscaster Al Michaels, another former CBS chief Jeff Sagansky, and one time MGM CEO Harry Sloan.

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.

Read more

In Other News