Where: Hollywood & Highland grand ballroom
Who’s expected: The Kodak Theater will empty straight into the ball, which is always the first stop of the swirl of parties following the awards show.
Why you don’t want to miss it: Chef Wolfgang Puck is preparing (among other things) 1,450 pounds of Maine lobster and 1,250 stone crab claws, enhanced by 10 pounds of black winter truffles. Throw in 1,000 bottles of Moet & Chandon champagne, to toast what that company’s Paige Petersen calls “one of the biggest winning moments of success and achievement in the world,” and you may just want to stay there all night.
VANITY FAIR DINNER AND POST-OSCAR PARTY
Where: Sunset Tower Hotel
Who’s expected: Graydon Carter and a few covergirls and boys past and future
Why you don’t want to miss it: In addition to the usual In-N-Out burgers, Magnolia Bakery cupcakes (with nominees’ names written in the frosting) will be served. Plus, it’s always fun to try to guess when the fire marshal will close off entries for a while, because of overcrowding.
Popular on Variety
22ND NIGHT OF 100 STARS VIEWING PARTY
Where: Beverly Hills Hotel
Who’s expected: Host Norby Walters and closer to 200 stars than 100, including party regulars Robert Forster, Martin Landau and Bo Derek
Why you don’t want to miss it: As Walters says, “I know almost every actor in town, and my attitude is that if they are not going to the Oscars, they can come have fun with us.” But only until the show is over, however. “When Oscar ends, we end. People head out for the afterparties then.”
OSCAR NIGHT AMERICA 2012
Where: 49 cities across the United States
Who’s expected: Movie lovers living outside Hollywood
Why you don’t want to miss it: These glamorous parties that gather film fans together to view the show are sponsored by AMPAS; last year they raised more than $3.5 million for local charities.
MERCEDES-BENZ OSCAR VIEWING PARTY
Where: Soho House
Who’s expected: Mercedes-Benz execs and their Hollywood-based celeb fans of the brand
Why you don’t want to miss it: Top-shelf in every way, Mercedes spares no expense when it entertains, so this one is bound to be an elegant soiree.
THE WEINSTEIN CO. OSCAR VIEWING AND AFTER-PARTY
Where: Mondrian Hotel
Who’s expected: Harvey Weinstein and his stable of actors, including all the stars from “The Artist,” who hope to be passing around the best picture Oscar.
Why you don’t want to miss it: Dewar’s is the sponsor, so plenty of whiskey will be flowing; try a wee dram of its Signature blend.
20TH ANNUAL ACADEMY AWARDS VIEWING PARTY BENEFITING THE ELTON JOHN AIDS FOUNDATION
Where: West Hollywood Park
Who’s expected: Elton John, David Furnish, Steven Tyler, Ted Danson, Mary Steenburgen and many others
Why you don’t want to miss it: An all-new venue in WeHo, a special five-course meal created by “Iron Chef” Cat Cora and a live perf after the kudocast ends by Foster the People.
APLA’S 11TH ANNUAL “THE ENVELOPE PLEASE” OSCAR VIEWING PARTY
Where: The Abbey Food & Bar
Who’s expected: Hosts Abbey founder David Cooley and “NCIS” star Pauley Perrette along with many of their WeHo pals
Why you don’t want to miss it: Once again benefitting AIDS Project LA, this annual fete at the town’s most famous gay bar begins as an exclusive viewing party and sit-down dinner, then morphs into a public afterparty with tunes spun by DJ Connor Cruise. Grey Goose vodka and Beau Joie champagne are two of the sponsors, so partygoers will be able to stay happily hydrated all night long.
RELATIVITY MEDIA POST-OSCAR PARTY
Where: A private mansion
Who’s expected: Hosts Ryan Kavanaugh, Tucker Tooley, Michael Saylor, Brent Bolthouse, Carter Reum and Richard Bellofatto
Why you don’t want to miss it: Not ready to go to bed at 2 a.m. when all the bars and restaurants quit serving and the other bashes wind down? No problem, as the Relativity party starts at 11 p.m. and goes to sunrise.
MAXIM LATE NIGHT OSCAR PARTY
Where: A Hollywood Hills estate
Who’s expected: Ludacris, who will perform, and a bevy of Maxim beauties.
Why you don’t want to miss it: This one’s so super-secret that the shuttles up from the Sunset Boulevard parking will have blacked-out windows to keep the location a mystery. Ford Mustang is sponsoring and DJ Vice is spinning tunes when Ludacris is offstage. The celebrations go on until 4 a.m.