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Hollywood cut up as Democrats swap glitzy fundraisers for rallies


From Tom Hanks to Scarlett Johansson, Hollywood A-listers decided to see President Donald Trump defeated are badly cut up over the very best Democratic candidate to again with their silver-screen {dollars}.

A search of federal donation data reveals Hanks has minimize a test for former vice chairman Joe Biden, whereas Johansson has donated to progressive Senator Elizabeth Warren.

Cheers star Ted Danson gave the utmost $2,800 to Warren — however his spouse, actress Mary Steenburgen, additionally backed Biden.

George Takei of Star Trek fame merely could not make his thoughts up. He donated to each Biden and former Indiana mayor Pete Buttigieg.

In line with Los Angeles-based Democratic strategist Invoice Carrick, these cut up loyalties and a number of donations can be uncommon some other yr, however have been widespread within the 2020 race.

“Hollywood has all the time been an important supply of marketing campaign fundraising for presidential candidates,” he informed AFP. “This time has been a bit completely different.”

That is partly as a result of giant subject of potential nominees, with many donors giving to as many as three candidates, Carrick stated.

For Steven Maviglio, a Democratic strategist in California’s state capital Sacramento, the celebs “are as dazed and confused about who’s the very best one to beat Trump as everybody else.”

This yr’s confusion stands in stark distinction to 2016, when Hillary Clinton was Tinseltown’s clear favourite. 

“Hillary was out right here in Hollywood on a regular basis,” stated Maviglio. 

“I do not assume anyone has measured as much as what Hillary did final time round right here.”

Learn additionally: Hollywood sizzles for Buttigieg, eyeing his future after 2020

Cocktail events

In actual fact, some main Democratic candidates have largely skipped Hollywood’s glitzy non-public fundraiser circuit.

Frontrunner Bernie Sanders’ message has attracted celebrities together with Susan Sarandon — and Dick Van Dyke, Sarah Silverman and Public Enemy will characteristic at his Los Angeles rally Sunday. Warren has drawn assist from singer John Legend.

However each Sanders and Warren have blasted the closed-door, uber-wealthy soirees typical of Hollywood campaigns, in favor of pursuing huge numbers of small, on-line donations.

They haven’t “invested the time in Hollywood as a result of they do not have the fundraising targets in thoughts,” stated Carrick.

Billionaire candidate Michael Bloomberg, who’s self-funding his run for the White Home, has centered extra on harvesting assist from elected officers in California than film stars.

This has left profitable Los Angeles cocktail events, dinners and luncheons open for the likes of Biden and Buttigieg.

Biden has moved to mobilize Hollywood contacts he cast as a senator and vice chairman — he appeared onstage on the Oscars in 2016 — and is due Wednesday to attend a serious fundraiser hosted by former Paramount boss Sherry Lansing.

However he has did not generate the keenness loved by Clinton or Barack Obama. 

Buttigieg has received a listing of superstar endorsements together with Sharon Stone, Kevin Costner and Michael J Fox — however began from a really small base in Tinseltown. 

Learn additionally: The Strokes announce new album at Bernie Sanders rally

Trump issue

California is holding its vote early this yr, on Tremendous Tuesday on March 3 — which means it ought to have a bigger influence on the general end result of the Democratic race. 

Because of this the main focus has been much less on securing Hollywood’s money and extra on persuading the state’s voters.

“California really issues this time,” stated Maviglio. “Previously, the candidates got here to California, held fundraisers in Hollywood and left to return to New Hampshire and Iowa. 

“However right here they’re staying and campaigning with them, and truly doing actual occasions that matter to individuals,” he added, citing Sanders’ huge marketing campaign community and Buttigieg’s rallies in “odd” components of the state’s rural inside.

Rich studio executives, on-screen stars and expertise brokers — with their huge consumer lists — will turn out to be extra useful because the November election approaches, stated Carrick.

And there must be no downside getting these individuals fired up.

“An important catalyst for Hollywood contributions in fundraising is Donald Trump — he’s extremely unpopular right here,” stated Carrick.

Even so, the anti-Trump fever that has gripped Hollywood since his 2016 election has additionally diluted the influence of superstar messages within the Democratic primaries, stated Maviglio.

“It is received misplaced within the sauce a bit bit,” he stated. “Individuals are yawning extra about it as a result of we’re simply seeing day by day, on each degree, opposing Trump.”

“And since they have not received behind one candidate, they’ve made much less of a distinction.”

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The Fantasy Art of Celebrity Perfume


Why do people buy celebrity fragrance? According to this Bloomberg story, it’s because they want to smell like a slightly better version of themselves, not because they want to reek of drug-store fame. Sometimes famous can smell really nice, though, like in the case of Midnight Fantasy, Britney Spears’ blue Swarovski-bedazzled perfume that got a “four-star; excellent” review from the New York Times in 2009.


Photo courtesy of THNK1994.

It was during a Fragrantica deep-dive, on the hunt for a knockoff version of Cacharel’s discontinued Gloria, that led artist Miriam Carothers to a Kylie Minogue perfume, and subsequently, down a rabbit hole of celebrity fragrances. She partnered with Matt Harkins and Viviana Olen of the gallery THNK1994, who staged the 2016 exhibition ‘Olsen Twins Hiding From the Paparazzi’ and 2017’s ‘Real Housewives Pointing Fingers,’ to create an exhibit titled ‘The Fantasy Art of Celebrity Perfume,’ which opens December 28 th at 246 E 4th Street in Manhattan (with a New Year’s Eve closing party at MeMe’s Diner in Brooklyn.)

Carothers has illustrated, in portrait form, the most famous celebrity perfume ads, from Elizabeth Taylor’s White Diamonds to Selena Gomez’s The Debut Fragrance. The exhibit will feature a giant perfume bottle, a mini makeup counter, and an original box set of each celeb perfume in the show—as well as their dollar-store “Sexy Lady” knockoffs. There will also be a photo shoot station and a “fabulous” floral display. “We wanted to have just a touch of, “Oh, am I in a department store?” Olen says.


Photo courtesy of THNK1994.

Carothers, along with Harkins and Olen, talked to GARAGE about the smell of fame, how the exhibit came about, and the perfectly marketed appeal of the celebrity fragrance.

What makes someone smell famous?

Olen: I think it’s a smell that’s mysterious, yet precise.

Harkins: Whatever it is, it’s a lot of it.

Olen: If you have a lot of perfume on and you enter the room, you’re instantly famous. Because everybody’s looking at you. Everybody’s thinking about you, talking about you, and they’re like, ‘Who is that? Who’s that girl?’


Photo courtesy of THNK1994.

What are the components of an essential celebrity fragrance?

Olen: It’s got to work out on the town. With the photo shoot, for drinking champagne, eating caviar on a yacht. It’s gotta work for a movie premiere. It’s gotta work for a secret meeting with your lover. It’s also gotta work at the gym. It’s gotta be so diverse. And it just has to work at the most fabulous locales. And then, it’s fit for a celebrity.

Carothers: Of all the celeb fragrances I think both Madonna’s Truth or Dare from 2012 and Truth or Dare Naked are excellent. You can tell she was thoughtfully involved in them. I’m dying to get my hands on a bottle of Amanda Lepore’s perfume, Amanda by Amanda Lepore, but it’s like a gajillion dollars on eBay.

Harkins: I think to make it iconic, it has to have a rollout that is well thought out. Britney is great at this. She has complete schemes, designs for the rollout of each, and every scent. There are video ads and a push before it comes out. And then, the name is on the bottle and…

Olen: Always put the name on the bottle. I’m somebody who loves a good theme. I’m from Las Vegas, and the best casinos had the strongest themes. I think that is what has to happen with this story, as well. Elizabeth Taylor is iconic enough that it can be just White Diamonds, because you know she’s got the biggest jewelry collection in the world. She was on Larry King with it, she did the costume jewelry. Britney presents like, okay, this is Maui Fantasy. That’s like, ‘This is what you do when you’re a beach girl.’ And each one has that story just so compact.


Photo courtesy of THNK1994.

I feel like I’ve had the most delicious dessert looking at Miriam’s illustrations. How did the show come about?

Carothers: I think we’re all absurdists, and it’s been many successful collaborations since the Nicole Richie BBQ/PopCultureDiedIn2009 show. During these scary years where all the news seems to be such a bummer, THNK1994 fills this need for wacky art shows that make people happy.

Having always loved the fantasy art of Frank Frazetta and basically everyone who’s ever contributed to Heavy Metal Magazine, I wanted to try that high contrast illustration/fine art hybrid style on the ultimate fantasy images of celebs and their fragrance ads, which are truly bonkers!

Olen: And it’s amazing, her stuff. Each one has 60-plus hours of work go into it. And it’s so interesting looking at something that is so hyper-real because I think, for a second, your mind’s like, ‘Oh, did somebody just put this in a computer, or something?’ But then you really take a moment, and you [realize] this is hand-drawn.

Harkins: It’s obsessive almost. The quality of how she works, which is so perfect for the show because it’s all about these perfumes that are geared toward people who would obsess about each celebrity that’s in the ad.


Photo courtesy of THNK1994.

Are the celebrity smells going to be in the air?

Harkins: Oh, absolutely. All the scents that we got are going to be around for people to spray.
Olen: They’re dollar store scents, so get ready for that. We are going to open the door occasionally.


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