|Anne Hathaway welcomes Jared Leto to the club.|
|Sunday night in Hollywood was Oscar time, as the world knows. And if you don’t know all about it by now, you probably weren’t that interested in the first place. The Oscars, for the television watching public is about The Oscars, not so much about the work. It has always been thus since television got into the act about sixty years ago. Movie stars, shiny cars; that’s what you get to see and thrill to, or make commentaries about while you’re watching it with your friends. It’s a party.
But the night, Oscar night, in Hollywood is a different matter. One of the most interesting aspects of it is the after-parties. There were always after-parties in the history of the Academy’s big night. But back in the 1960s or thereabouts, Irving “Swifty” Lazar, the agent, staged one that was for the books.
|More stars than there are in Heaven, was the MGM motto and Swifty took it to heart. That was his Oscar party. First held at the Bistro (no longer extant) in Beverly Hills, and then up on Sunset at the first Spago which was then brand new and the hottest coolest place in town. It was one of the most coveted invitations on both Coasts, and even across the seas.
The end of an era, yes, but the beginning of a new one, a bigger, flashier, grander, more fabulous after-party was inaugurated by Graydon Carter, the peripatetic editor-in-chief of Vanity Fair. It first took place at Morton’s restaurant in West Hollywood. Carter who has an eye and a sense for “stars” brought out the crème de la crème, old and new and the Swifty’s crowd (maybe). It was an instant hit and never compared to the Lazar party. Because it was beyond compare. This party is so big that guests (well, not the most VIP) are invited in shifts. Really. And they go ... and wait ... because it’s worth it.
Graydon Carter brought out all the stars. He stuck his little toes into the bubbling brook of movieland and liked the feel of it. I wouldn’t doubt he thought more than once, of giving up his entire publishing career for the adventures of the Big Screen. He even produced some very successful docu-films. But he knows better. Hollywood’s a place where you’re walking around on smoke. I loved ya honey, but the show closed.
|All of which you already know probably. Last Sunday’s New York Times had a long piece, fascinating, about Graydon Carter’s long strange trip to Hollywood via the Vanity Fair Oscar party, and what it’s turned in to. An even bigger party, that’s what. This year, as it has been before, Patrick McMullan, the ubiquitous social/party photographer from Noo Yawk, was there with his associates, all–camera-ed up, and he got them all for you to see. At least enough of them that by the time you finish looking at these pictures, you’ll have had your fill of Oscar night. And it’s fun. It just is. That’s what Graydon Carter wrought for once and for all, for the Big Night In Lalaland.|
Photographs by PatrickMcMullan.com