There were women in bikinis. Women in lingerie. There were women everywhere in party scenes from Sunday’s “Entourage” at Brett Ratner’s Beverly Hills home, which the director allowed for use as part of his cameo on the HBO series.
So that certainly gives you a sense of what an unlikely a place it will be for a Hillary Clinton fund-raiser next Wednesday. Although the Ratner event is aimed at young Hollywood, organizers assure that the vibe will be quite a bit more staid with Clinton’s visit. But the $250-per-person event reflects the new efforts that presidential campaigns are taking as they search for new campaign dollars.
As the year goes on, it becomes harder and harder to find untapped donors, particularily since so many people have maxed out. They cannot give more. So like Barack Obama, Clinton is turning to cheaper and hipper events.
Ratner’s Benedict Canyon home, called Hilhaven Lodge, has a fabled history — Ingrid Bergman lived there, as did Kim Novak and James Caan — and for much of the 70s and 80s was the pad of producer Allan Carr. He had a disco installed in the basement. Ratner restored the house, and added an arcade-style photo booth, for which he’s published a book on the various guests who’ve agreed to crawl in and be shot.
One organizer of the Clinton hopes that the late-evening fund-raiser will help soften the campaign’s image as being stiffer and more formal than Obama’s campaign. Last month, Obama hosted a fund-raiser at the Hollywood nightclub Boulevard 3, drawing a crowd that included Hill Harper, Jessica Biel, Taye Diggs and Amy Smart. It was organized by a group of young professionals called OO8 The Movement, which has its own Obama-for-president website and plans other similar events in the coming months.
On the committee for Clinton’s event are Christina Aguilera, Matt Alvarez, Brent Bolthouse, Doug Ellin, Victoria Harvie, Eric Kranzler, Debbie Liebling, George and Phil Maloof, Jamie Patricof, Ben Schwerin, Brian Weinstein, Penelope Cruz, Angie Banacki, Healther Graham, Eva Longoria, Jeremy Piven, Mike Myers, Will.I.Am, Todd Phillips and Chad Griffin. Ratner is hosting along with Scott Budnick, Michael Kives, Steve Bing and Ron Burkle.
Clinton’s visit will come with a much more traditional fund-raiser: Before going to Ratner’s, she’ll be at the home of Peter Chernin for a $2,300-per-person event that is co-hosted by Steven Spielberg and Haim Saban. And on the other side of the political aisle, former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani will be throwing a fund-raiser on the same night at the Beverly Hills Hotel, just down the street from Hilhaven.