The Hollywood Reporter
Oscar Fav ‘Argo’ Attracts Massive Turnout of Movie and Media A-Listers in New York
10/10/2012 by Scott Feinberg
The film’s George Clooney and Ben Affleck hosted the likes of Matt Damon, Michael Douglas and Bette Midler, plus Ted Koppel, Brian Williams and Barbara Walters.
Just one night afterÂ LincolnÂ dominated the New York film scene, one of its chief rivals for the best picture Oscar arrived on the east coast and had a huge night of its own.
The Warner Bros. dramatic-thrillerÂ ArgoÂ — which had itsÂ world premiere in TellurideÂ last month and itsÂ U.S. premiere in Los AngelesÂ last week, and will open nationwide on Friday — had its first screenings in Gotham City on Tuesday evening. Two screenings of the film, which seemed to go over just as well here as they have everywhere else, were sandwiched around a dinner at the Columbus Circle hot-spot Porter House New York, so attendees either caught the flick before or after chowing down. All in all, the occasion, which was coordinated in partnership with TheÂ Peggy SiegalÂ Company, drew an A-list crowd of movie stars and media personalities that was of a quality and quantity rarely matched at an east coast event of this sort.
In attendance on behalf of the film, which revolves around a little-known aspect of the Iranian hostage crisis of 1979-1981, were co-producersÂ George ClooneyÂ andÂ Grant Heslov; director/starÂ Ben Affleck; supporting actorsÂ Alan Arkin,Â Bryan Cranston,John Goodman, andÂ Tate Donovan; and screenwriterÂ Chris Terrio.
They were joined, from the Hollywood side of things, byÂ Matt Damon, Affleck’s childhood best friend with whom he wroteÂ Good Will HuntingÂ (1997) and won an Oscar 15 years ago;Â Wall StreetÂ compadresÂ Oliver StoneÂ andÂ Michael Douglas, who chatted together in a booth;Â Glenn Close;Â Barry Levinson, the Oscar-winning director whose horror filmÂ The BayÂ is now playing at the New York Film Festival;Â Bette Midler, who rarely hits the social circuit anymore;Â GirlsÂ starsÂ Alex KarpovskyÂ andÂ Zosia Mamet; writer-directorÂ Oren Moverman; and actorsÂ Adam ArkinÂ (Alan’s son and Clooney’s former costar onÂ E.R.),Â Bob Balaban, Golden Age beautyÂ Arlene Dahl,Â Peter Riegert, andÂ Patrick Wilson.
Representing the New York media were formerÂ NightlineÂ anchorÂ Ted KoppelÂ (archival footage of whom appears inÂ Argo, alongside that ofÂ Diane Sawyer); NBC Nightly News anchorÂ Brian WilliamsÂ (who dined next to Clooney);Â The ViewÂ co-hostÂ Barbara Walters;Â 60 MinutesÂ reportersÂ Steve KroftÂ andÂ Bob Simon; ABC News reportersÂ Dan Abrams,Â Cynthia McFadden,Â Brian Ross, andÂ Bob Woodruff; CNBC’sÂ Jim Cramer; gossip columnistÂ Liz Smith; and News Corporation advisorÂ Joel Klein.
A few other guests didn’t quite fall into either of the above categories, including rock starÂ StingÂ and fashion mogulÂ Tommy Hilfiger.