In Los Angeles’ closely fought mayor’s race, each of the major candidates brings with him Hollywood support to Tuesday’s primary.
Mayor Jim Hahn, who is trying to keep his job and fend off major challengers Antonio Villaraigosa, Bob Hertzberg, Bernard Parks and Richard Alarcon, has turned to some heavy hitters in the entertainment industry for support.
The Hahn campaign listed as supporters Ron Meyer, president-CEO of Universal Studios; DreamWorks partner Jeffrey Katzenberg; actor Edward Norton; and producer Robert Simonds. Specifics about the nature of supporters’ involvement in the campaign were not offered.
But the incumbent has no lock on Hollywood. Recently, Fox co-chairman Jim Gianopulos and Endeavor partner Ari Emanuel co-hosted a fund-raiser for Villaraigosa, whom Hahn defeated four years ago.
Hertzberg also is picking up endorsements from showbiz, his campaign said. Among the names on his lists of supporters, per his campaign, are Clint Eastwood, who has dabbled in politics himself; Jack Nicholson; Sylvester Stallone; and Sherry Lansing, who recently stepped down as chief at Paramount.
Parks, the city’s former police chief, also has reached out to celebrity and industry supporters. His camp noted his supporters include Bill Cosby, Samuel L. Jackson, Arsenio Hall, Brooke Shields and Angie Dickinson.
The campaigns have sought out the dollars and glamour Hollywood names can provide, but there has been little debate on the campaign trail about showbiz.
Hahn pointed to the reform of the business tax, which exempts most small entertainment businesses, including producers, directors and screenwriters, as a measure that’s encouraging the film biz to stay in Los Angeles.
Hahn also said he has tried to ensure that permitting for film and TV productions is as easy as possible.