Oscar 2012 Parties: 'The Battle Plan Is Unbelievable'

Tue Feb 21, 2012 7:46pm EST

With the Oscars just around the corner, awards-season revelry is kicking into high gear.

TheWrap has distilled the best of 30 high-profile celebrations for this week's intrepid partygoers.

Also read: 2012 Oscars: Complete List of Nominees

With predictions running in their favor, can anyone beat the Weinsteins (16 nominations, multiple soirees)?

Vanity Fair can out bubbly them: It has seven nights of “Campaign Hollywood” parties leading up to Sunday.

Also read: Steve Pond's Oscar Picks: 'The Artist' Will Win, but Should It?

There will be 1,450 pounds of Maine lobster and 5 shrimp budgeted for each of the 1,500 guests (vegan or not) at the Governors Ball Oscar night. Party planners have ordered 1,000 bottles of Moet & Chandon champagne for the first-stop bash.

Afterward, many a guest will head to Vanity Fair's bash, where staffers will put together real-time video reports.

“The battle plan is unbelievable,” Vanity Fair Vice President and Publisher Edward Menicheschi told TheWrap.

Read on to find out why cheering at the Mondrian is a spoiler alert, why Oscar weekend could upgrade you to the carpool lane year round, and why Elton John gave Steven Tyler a “plus two.”

TUESDAY

40th Anniversary  of Sir Charles Chaplin’s Academy Award Black-Tie Dinner

Direct the car to: Chateau Marmont

On the list: Hosts Dolores and Carmen Chaplin (Charlie Chaplin’s granddaughters) and Jaeger-LeCoultre, Alexander Payne, Julia Ormond, Lawrence Bender, Rose McGowan

Logline: This is what Awards season is supposed to look like in the movies. Black tie, moguls, legends and their offspring.

Smart guest takeaway: This is a return visit for the Chaplin granddaughters, who as Weinstein friends hosted a 1920s-themed premiere screening of “The Artist,” replete with old-time cars, at the Academy headquarters in Beverly Hills a few days before Thanksgiving.

Vanity Fair's Launch of the Montblanc Princess Grace Collection

Direct the car to: (the all new) Hotel Bel-Air

Logline: Wendy Stark Morrissey hosts the tribute to Grace Kelly.

Smart guest takeaway: “We have a slice of an entertainment community constituency each night, but it is all different cuts,” Vanity Fair Vice President and Publisher Edward Menicheschi tells TheWrap. “By the end of the week, we’ve done a good job of speaking to different communities that make up this extraordinary industry,” he said.

WEDNESDAY

Colin and Livia Firth’s Oxfam America Dinner

Direct the car to: Chateau Marmont

Logline: In addition to Oxfam’s global relief goals, Ermenegildo Zegna and Livia Firth partnered to lobby other top designers to be eco-friendly while designing the “wear it once” gowns that permeate Awards Season. This is Vanity Fair’s Wednesday offering.

Smart guest takeaway: This is not a “show up and smile” hosting job. Last year’s Oscar king curated the guest list himself.

The Wrap’s 3rd Annual Oscar Party

Direct the car to: Culina at the Four Seasons, 6 p.m.

On the list: TheWrap Founder and Editor-in-Chief Sharon Waxman and the industry decision makers who matter the most during awards season and year round.

Smart guest takeaway: Grab the ear of awards analyst Steve Pond to get the early jump on 2013. He correctly predicted the last two Best Picture winners in September.

Global Green USA’s 9th Annual Oscar Party

Direct the car to: Avalon in Hollywood, 8 p.m.

On the list: Green thumb regulars like Adrian Grenier, Rosario Dawson, Johnny Galecki, Oscar stakeholder Allison Janney (“The Help”), and members of the general public willing to pay from $50 up to $1000.

Logline: This event is perennially heavy on music. This year Sheila E in on deck.

Smart guest takeaway: Bring a celeb friend, work your charm, or somehow score a loaner on sponsor Chevy Volt’s electric vehicle. It gets an automatic for a carpool lane sticker.

Eva Longoria’s Pre-Oscar Party: Part I + II

Direct the car to: Longoria’s Beso in Hollywood

Logline: On Wednesday she hosts a “glamorous Spanish flamenco night” at her own restaurant. On Thursday, she plays the second half of a double header, co-hosting Vanity Fair’s Thursday event with Chrysler supporting her Eva Longoria Foundation in the same space. The back-to-back earns her a nominee for this writer’s “Grenier” award for tangential Oscar revelry.

Flamenco night co-hosts: Domestic violence themed charity Linda’s Voice, Ciroc and Fiji Water.

THURSDAY

Bovet 1822’s Hollywood Domino Gala and Tournament

Direct the car to: Sunset Tower, 8 p.m.

On the list: Seth MacFarlane (at left, hosting last year), LeAnn Rimes, Dave Annable, Jamie Lyn Sigler, a healthy dose of social industry executives, and game tables.

Logline: Yes, they actually play a modified version of dominoes at this gala, and it’s a fun one. There’s always good music, and a balanced room not overrun by talent or gawkers. Fans of “Midnight in Paris” and “Hugo” will appreciate the period Parisian theme.

Smart guest takeaway: Paul Haggis’ nonprofit Artists for Peace and Justice is the evening’s beneficiary.

QVC’s “Buzz on the Red Carpet”

Direct the car to: Wetherly Garden at the Four Seasons, Beverly Hills

On the list: Enthusiastic celebrity fashion retailers like Nicole Richie, Kim and Kourtney Kardashian, momager Kris Jenner, Kimora Lee Simmons, "Bridesmaids" actress Wendi McLendon-Covey, QVC President Mike George, and QVC CEO (US) Claire Watts.

Logline: There’s a reason why most new reality talent holding deals have provisions cutting the production companies in on future revenue streams – these fashion personalities are ferociously spinning off lucrative product lines.

Smart guest takeaway: Come camera ready. The cocktail party is a prelude to a three-hour show that airs on the channel Friday night at 9 p.m.

OK Magazine’s Pre-Oscar Party

Direct the car to: Greystone Manor in West Hollywood, 7:30 p.m.

On the list: Even though “Vinny” never got near the Oscars, the tabloid honors Adrien Grenier and is doubling down by getting “Sloane” (Emmanuelle Chriqui) to present at the mag’s second L.A. party in two weeks with Garage PR. (The firm just managed the media positioning of Tru nightclub in Hollywood when it suddenly became Whitney Houston’s final public outing.)

Smart guest takeaway: Don’t plan on loitering. Sam Nazarian’s SBE henchmen will kick out guests before opening for regularly scheduled Thursday night festivities.

Paramount and Grey Goose’s Oscar Dinner

Direct the car to: Soho House, West Hollywood

Logline: After a long slow crawl through the desert, Paramount serves up a tall glass of ice water. Finally, an A-list event with actual Oscar contenders. Expect Brad Grey, Martin Scorsese and more.

Smart guest takeaway: At 18, Paramount has the second most nominations after Sony.

Art of Elysium “Pieces of Heaven” Art Auction

Direct the car to: Smashbox Studios in Hollywood, 7 p.m.

On the list: Pre-awards season buzz lure Michael Fassbender, Gerard Butler, Ali Larter and Hayes MacArthur, Kirsten Dunst, Busy Phillips, Rashida Jones and AOE regulars Topher Grace and Joe Manganiello.

Logline: Art of Elysium’s simple mission is a major talent magnet: household names co-develop, co-produce, and co-star in live theater, film, and art productions as equals with children battling life threatening medical problems. The annual fundraiser is the string section in Oscar week’s cacophony of events.

Smart guest takeaway: The lot includes an Andy Warhol of a Dolly Parton. Further evidence that this isn’t the typical dinner party auction: Christie’s L.A. President Andrea Fiuczynski is wielding the gavel. (Photo by Getty Images)

FRIDAY

WME’s Music for Film Brunch

Direct the car to: Eveleigh in West Hollywood, 11:30 a.m.

On the list: Quincy Jones

Logline: WME’s music for visual media department and The Composer’s Guild of America join up with Quincy to host an inaugural event in an under exploited timeslot.

Smart guest takeaway: Ludovic Bource (“The Artist”) has won the BAFTA and Critics Choice awards for Original Score so far this season. John Williams is a double-nominee for “The Adventures of Tin Tin” and “War Horse.” Kermit and Miss Piggy of Bret McKenzie’s Best Song nominee “Man or Muppet” will likely be tied up on Oscar rehearsals for their presenting gig, so don’t count on any morning banjo.

5th Annual Women In Film Pre-Oscar Cocktail Party – Hosted by Gwyneth Paltrow and Cathy Schulman

Direct the car to: Cecconis, 5 p.m.

On the list: Academy Award winning hosts Gwyneth Paltrow and Cathy Schulman, Octavia Spencer, Ellie Kemper, Vanessa Hudgens, Oscar throwback Gabourey Sidibe, new “Bond girl” Bérénice Marlohe and 17 other female nominees.

Logline: In five years, this has become a staple of the awards weekend. These two power hours are a cocktail of mentors, mentees, current winners and future headliners. Before the Oscar nomination, the Emmy win, the high profile SNL hosting gig, and the long box office legs on “Bridesmaids”, WIF tapped Melissa McCarthy to host last spring’s Crystal + Lucy awards.

Smart guest takeaway: It’s not all women. Last year David O. Russell was front and center for Schulman’s state-of-the- industry analysis. The overly attentive servers will bathe you in Perrier-Jouet before you get out of your car on the way in, and Oscar nominee Amanda Knight (Makeup, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2”) is the makeup sommelier who picked out the MAC gifts on the way out.

Great British Film Reception

Direct the car to: The British Consul General’s Residence, Downtown L.A.

Hosts: Rt. Hon. Jeremy Hunt (U.K.’s Secretary of State for Culture) and British Consul General Dame Barbara Hay

On the list: Perhaps a Stephen Daldry (Best Picture nominee “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close”), Gary Oldman, Janet McTeer, or an honorary cranberry passport for “Iron Lady” Meryl Streep? Think lots of “Tinker Tailor Solider Spy.”

Smart guest takeaway: Because his jurisdiction also includes this summer’s Olympic games, Secretary Hunt holds the secret to how Danny Boyle (Opening Ceremony Director) and Daldry (Executive Producer) are going to top the Beijing 2008 opening spectacle. So far, all Boyle’s let slip is that it involves a “giant bell” from the same firm that made Philadelphia’s Liberty Bell and Big Ben.

Martin Scorsese and The Film Foundation Cocktails

Direct the car to: Hotel Bel-Air

Logline: Richard Mille and Chrysler get behind Scorsese’s personal passion: preserving and restoring film projects and financially supporting film archives.

Smart guest takeaway: Now that Clint Eastwood’s in the Chrysler family, I’ll be looking for the great two-shot photo to come out of this.

Agency Parties

Ari Emanuel hosts William Morris Endeavor’s party at his house Friday night, as CAA also convenes at a private residence.

SATURDAY

Film Independent Spirit Awards – Backstage Sponsor Tents

Direct the car to: Santa Monica Beach at Ocean & Pico, Saturday Afternoon

On the list: Spirit Awards Host Seth Rogen, Jessica Chastain, Kate Beckinsale, William H. Macy, Zoe Saldana, Ed Helms, Anne Heche and more.

Logline: The chatty social hopping within the backstage plot of sponsor tents channels the breezy energy of a polo match, or at least how they look in the glossy pages of a Jason Binn Niche Media title like “Hamptons” or “Ocean Drive.” It’s not uncommon to see Nicole Kidman holding hands with Naomi Watts on their way to sniff out a free mega sized TV.

Smart guest takeaway: On3’s viewing tent (the official presenter gifting lounge) is the anchor. Even those that are swag-allergic always come in for things like the one-year all access movie freebie to AMC Theaters, a hit of Emergen-C, a Tree Hut scrub brewed specially for the ISA’s made from real red rubies, Wella Professionals styling, and a weekend stay at the Ritz-Carlton Central Park in Manhattan.

Weinstein and Grey Goose Night Before Party

Direct the car to: SoHo House, West Hollywood

Logline: With a sweet sixteen nominations, there’s lots to celebrate while everyone’s still a winner.

Smart guest takeaway: The only multiple nominations in a category crossover are Michelle Williams and Meryl Streep (Best Actress) and Costume Design (“The Artist” and “W.E.”) (Photo by Todd Williamson for BAFTA.)

Vanity Fair DJ Night with Fiat and L’Oreal Paris

Direct the car to: The space formerly known as Golden Bridge Yoga in Hollywood.

Logline: This is VF’s young slice of the Hollywood community, those that will work their way up to the aforementioned events throughout their careers. It’s traditionally lighter on talent than the rest of Campaign Hollywood, but heavier on those looking to loosen the tie for one night.

Smart guest takeaway: DJ’s are being flown in from London for this. Expect sets from festival sized talent like Nervo and Daisy O’Dell.

SUNDAY

Elton John AIDS Foundation 20th Annual Viewing Party

Direct the car to: City of West Hollywood Park, 4 p.m.

On the list: Sir Elton John & David Furnish, Adam Levine, Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry, Ellen DeGeneres, Brooklyn Decker, Jessica Alba, Kim Kardashian, Leona Lewis, Liam Hemsworth, Malin Ackerman, Mena Suvari, Paul Stanley, Ryan Kwanten, Lea Michele, and many more. 

Logline: The party is massive without diluting any quality, has two phases of guest arrivals, and is the biggest fundraising event on Oscar night. Blue-chip partners Chopard, Neuro  and Wells Fargo join help bring in more than $4 million for the fight against HIV/AIDS each Oscar night.

Smart guest takeaway: Sir Elton hosts a counterpart to this event in England each summer – The White Tie and Tiara Ball. Here on Sunday, Steven Tyler’s date is not his new significant other. The “Idol” judge held his own sweepstakes, auctioning off the right to be his date for $25,000 for CharityBuzz. L.A. band Foster the People take the stage at 10 p.m. Expect a collaboration with the host.

Smart Tweeter takeaway: This author will be live tweeting via @CelebSightings from inside.

The Weinstein Co. Oscar Viewing Party

Direct the car to: The Mondrian

Logline: This has the feel of a political campaign’s election night returns viewing party. If “The Artist” performs as expected, poolside cheers will be echoing up the sides of the building. HP and Dewars co-host the afternoon to evening nail biter.

Smart guest takeaway: With closed traffic lanes on Sunset and arrivals at Vanity Fair often backing up all the way to the Mondrian, a parade of smiling faces may actually just walk down the street east 300 yards to continue the party. (Photo by Getty Images)

84th Annual Academy Awards Governors Ball

Upstairs at Hollywood Highland, immediately after Billy Crystal says “good night”

Logline: Just because won't be set up with traditional banquet style seating at round tables doesn’t mean there won’t be 1,450 pounds of Maine lobster, 5 shrimp budgeted for each of the 1500 guests (vegan or not), and 1,000 bottles of Moet & Chandon champagne.

Smart guest takeaways: Everyone’s there, but not for long. Say “Congratulations” quickly.  The costume designer who’s doing Sacha Baron Cohen’s upcoming “The Dictator” also costumed the night’s 950 staff. (Photo of this year's decor by Greg Harbaugh/A.M.P.A.S.)

Vanity Fair’s Oscar Party

Direct the car to: Sunset Tower Hotel

On the list: The A-list, a few newsmakers from outside Hollywood, and a militarized security presence.

Logline: What is it like? “It’s a room full of movie stars,” an Oscar winner who attended last year after a surprise win told TheWrap. A semi well-known secret is that anyone with a little gold man (also the name of their Awards blog) can sort of “badge” their way in.

Smart guest takeaway: Each guest got a personalized video invite from Graydon Carter, with an animated envelope opening to reveal the invite. They went out over two weeks ago, so stop checking your inbox. After erecting a wall to block out view, the hosts are unusually aggressive in sharing what goes on behind it. Expect real-time video packages and photos from multiple in-house digital accounts: @VFAgenda, @VanityFair, and their own homepage. “The battle plan is unbelievable,” Menicheschi said.

Maxim Late Night

Direct the car to: The Hush-Hush Shuttle Drop Off Point, 11 p.m.

Logline: A new late-night entrant this year, the brand known more for male-focused Super Bowl and Kentucky Derby branded events enters Hollywood’s Super Bowl Sunday with major backing from Ford Mustang.

Smart guest takeaway: Going until 4 a.m., this is the last check-in, red carpet, and event of Awards season 2012 for a lot of the young and young at heart.

The Suites

Vacations are the cherished loot at the suites.

Trips to the Capella Hotels resort in Mexico are going to top talent at Kari Feinstein’s Style Lounge Thursday and Friday at the Mondrian. 

There’s only nine “Best Picture” nominees, but ten different international trips are baiting talent at the Secret Room Events on the rooftop of L’Ermitage. A week in the Maldives, with a water airplane transfer, is the top grab.

Related Articles:  2012 Oscars: Complete List of Nominees Steve Pond's Oscar Picks: 'The Artist' Will Win, but Should It?

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