The Emmy Awards celebrations leading up to Sunday, Sept. 20 started early. Variety was on hand inside the best parties around Hollywood as the stars mingled, noshed and toasted to TV’s finest. Here’s our daytime party report for Saturday, Sept. 19.
Women Making History Brunch, Skirball Cultural Center:
Viola Davis, Grammy-winning songwriter Diane Warren and producer Gale Anne Hurd were honored at the National Women’s History Museum’s fourth annual Women Making History Awards on Saturday morning, where Davis emphasized how important it is for women to value their inner beauty (no matter how cliched it sounds).
“The only barriers and only obstacles in life are literally the limitations of your imagination,” Davis said in her speech. “You’re the only one that can define you.”
Warren took a comedic approach, triggering laughs from the female-dominated room — which included stars like Maria Bello, Leona Lewis, Anna Chlumsky, Kat Graham, Taryn Manning and Kate Walsh — when she dropped the f-word.
At the event, which promoted women in today’s world, speakers emphasized the need for a National Women’s History Museum to ensure that women are a part of our national narrative. Young girls who took the stage pulled at the heart strings of donors when they explained how much a women’s history museum (the organization’s objective) would mean to them.
ICM Partners Pre-Emmy brunch, Santa Monica:
The brunch-time setting of ICM Partners’ Saturday Emmy gathering is always a nice break from the whirlwind of Friday night partying. ICM chief Chris Silbermann and producer Julia Franz opened up their Santa Monica backyard for a few hundred guests, many of whom were eyeing the pool as the temperature neared the 90-degree mark. An array of fruit and vegetable juices helped guests beat the heat, as did other kinds of grape-based beverages.
The relaxed vibe lent itself to spirited conversations. “Modern Family’s” Christopher Lloyd and Vince Gilligan compared notes for a time. ABC’s Howard Davine and AMC/SundanceTV’s Charlie Collier talked a little shop. “Better Call Saul’s” Tom Schnauz and wife Kristin Carey showed off pictures of baby Teddy, born about six weeks ago. Greg Lipstone collected congrats for his recent move from the agency to CEO of All3Media America, his longtime client.
Among others who mingled and munched: Showtime’s Matt Blank, BET’s Debra Lee, HBO’s Len Amato, CBS’ Scott Koondel, AMC’s Joel Stillerman, Turner’s Sam Linsky, Michael Gendler of Gendler & Kelly, Amazon’s Roy Price, Brillstein Entertainment Partners’ Jon Liebman. Actors spotted included Christoph Waltz, Chris Colfer, Pablo Schreiber, Alfre Woodard, Tatiana Maslany, Jeff Goldblum, Jason Ritter, Melanie Lynskey and “Chasing Life” star Italia Ricci.
BAFTA/L.A. Tea Party, SLS Hotel:
At BAFTA/L.A.’s intimate Emmy tea party on the hotel’s Garden Terrace — where there were more umbrellas than ever, to shield the persistent sun — the Brits couldn’t help but point out the fact that “Game of Thrones,” from the U.K., had more nominations than any other show this year.
“Downton Abbey’s” Gareth Neame and Julian Fellowes (whose wife was enjoying the weather, but noted, “it’s too hot for me!”) had much to celebrate. For them, as Neame put it, there is “a double buzz” Sunday: the Emmys, and the opener of the final series of their show on U.K. TV. Jim Carter, from the cast, wasn’t so much excited (“I get excited about cricket matches”) as “emotional” about the final season.
When he addressed the group, British Consul General Chris O’Connor extolled the “wonderful year for British shows and British talent” from “Game of Thrones” to “Downton Abbey” to newbie “Wolf Hall.” Colin Callender, “Wolf Hall” producer, said he was attracted to the show by Thomas Cromwell’s character and was pleased the series resonated with international audiences.
“Mad Men’s” Matthew Weiner greeted guests like old friends, while Kiernan Shipka, who was pulling double duty with “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” and “Mad Men, caught eyes in a brightly patterned dress. Meanwhile, nominee Michael Kelly (“House of Cards”) thanked BAFTA reps for having him, Adrien Brody sat discreetly on the side, Gwendoline Christie (“Game of Thrones”) chatted with the equally tall Sophie Turner and nominee Uzo Aduba (“Orange Is the New Black”) made the rounds with her sister (who was color-coordinated in a matching blue dress, and admires her sister’s “fun” role). Also sipping champagne and snacking on bites like cucumber and cheese sandwiches: Ed Westwick, Katharine McPhee, Tatiana Maslany, Raza Jaffrey, Edie Falco, John Ridley, Lorraine Toussaint and Niecy Nash.