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It’s party time in Hollywood again

Industry gears up for Golden Globes

Studios may still be cutting back on budgets and projects, but from the looks of this year’s Golden Globes parties, Hollywood is once again in the business of having a good time.

Three years removed from the writers strike and on the heels of a deep recession that forced the Globes and its after-parties into retreat, studios and networks are ramping up in full force for the post-kudocast party scene.

This year’s party list includes the usual suspects, with HBO, NBC Universal, WB/InStyle and Fox throwing lavish bashes at various rooms and tents in and around the Beverly Hilton, while a handful of newcomers look to make their mark.

Relativity Media, seeking kudos for “The Fighter,” furthers its push onto the Hollywood stage with its first major Globes soiree. Ryan Kavanaugh joins Harvey Weinstein in hosting duties as the fledgling studio teams with the Weinstein Co. (Latter shared a party last year with Summit, which has no dog in this year’s awards hunt.)

AMC/Sundance Channel and Sony will also be throwing soirees, though they’re smaller affairs with a more exclusive guest list.

Studios haven’t necessarily upped the coin they’re spending on this year’s fetes, but there are a number of sponsor partnerships aimed to help defray costs, including deals with such brands as Marie Claire magazine, sponsor of the Relativity/Weinstein party; and Chrysler, which teams on the NBC Universal/Focus party.

The BevHilton expects guests to number nearly 4,000, a tally that does not include the Fox bash because it’s being held off site at the Robinsons-May garage.

One party planner tells Variety that while it’s uncertain whether more money is being spent, the sense is that there are more events this year than in the past two, with the return of Sony and the emergence of Relativity adding to the tally.

Separately, Universal and Relativity/Weinstein are also throwing small, exclusive viewing parties for invited guests.

Pre-event festivities and gifting suites remain more subdued.

The BevHilton normally hosts one of the larger swag fests but will not have one this year. Other producers of lounges are opting to have their brand clients focus primarily on the Oscars and the Sundance Film Festival.

That doesn’t mean celebs will go home from the Globes weekend sans swag. Brand reps have donated product to the official Golden Globes gift bag, given to presenters and nominees, rather than pony up coin for a gifting suite. The bag is said to be the same size as in previous years.

Jewelry maker Pascal Mouawad is hosting the Hospitality Suite at the Nivea for Men Mansion at his home on Friday and Saturday. It will focus on makeup, skin-care and hair-care products.

And special-events company GBK Prods. will produce its Golden Globes gift lounge at the London Hotel, also through Saturday, where a contingent comprised mostly of TV thesps can pick up gifts that include a seven-night trip to Zamani Retreat Kempinski, a holistic health retreat in Africa.

While the after-party scene is on the upswing, the number of parties the night before the Globes has waned. Paramount is hosting one, but Lionsgate and Showtime chose not to repeat last year’s evening-before events.

(Marc Graser contributed to this report.)

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