Big Day for MPAA: Will Smith and Clint Eastwood headline the MPAA’s “Business of Show Business” symposium today, a day-long symposium designed to show Congress and others in government the economic heft that the industry provides to the economy. Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and House Ways and Means Committee chairman Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) are among those expected to attend. Steven Soderbergh and Taylor Hackford will be among the panelists. Eastwood, up for an Oscar for “Letters from Iwo Jima,” is honored at a gala dinner in the evening. Sen. Diane Feinstein says that the event may work both ways. “We want the industry to do well, but we want it to be a net positive addition to the values of Americans,” she told the Los Angeles Times. “It must understand this, I think, and respond to it in a positive sense, instead of saying, ‘Well, this is our business; we’re going to do what we want.’ ”
Streisand’s Stand: Enough people asked who she’s for, so she responded. Barbra Streisand says she is giving maximum allowable amounts to Hillary Clinton, John Edwards and Barack Obama. She was a huge campaigner for the Clintons, and contributed to Hillary’s Senate races, but wrote in a statement, “I’m very excited about the strength of the field for the 2008 presidential election, and I’m looking forward to a lively and healthy primary debate that discusses the key issues facing this country.” She says she may donate to other candidates as well.
Theirs, Mine and Ours: “Mine Your Own Business,” the expose of environmentalists that stirred up green anger because its makers booked a screening at the National Geographic Society in D.C., actually was conceived by the Gabriel Resources Co. They want government approaval to build a massive open pit mine in Rosia Montana in Romania. Its CEO, Alan Hill, was so upset over the Hungarian doc “El Dorado,” which outlined the harm that would come from the project, that he enlisted his own documentary. According to Newsweek, the makers of “Mine Your Own Business” still exercised editorial control, even though it is an indictment of the environmental movement.
Reagan Remembered: Former First Lady Nancy Reagan is scheduled to present the 2007 Ronald Reagan Freedom Award to George Herbert Walker Bush tonight at the Beverly Hilton. The $1,000-per-person event, held on what would have been Reagan’s 96th birthday, raises money for the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library Foundation.