Paramount employees on the studio's Melrose lot are still nursing whatever hangovers they managed on three drink tickets' worth of hooch at last night's holiday party, while any of their marginalized, uninvited CBS Corp neighbors who may have misguidedly attempted to infiltrate the event are quietly wondering whether the genital stun-gunning they received for being caught without a proper bracelet will have repercussions for their future reproductive plans. We've received some reports from last night's festivities, including one from a brave and resourceful CBSer who used Jedi Mind Trick-levels of deception to bypass the gatekeepers, score his free drinks, and take in the opulent, Christmassy delights (which, unfortunately, didn't included the Bono appearance rumored yesterday) that Brad Grey never wanted him to enjoy:
I'm proud to say I scored a victory for CBSers everywhere by crashing the Paramount Christmas Party last night. With my blue wrist band and three drink tickets, I toasted all those who were denied the chance to eat free Pink's chili dogs and ice skate on a rink the size of my living room. All I did was cover most of badge with my hand, so the girl handing out the bracelets couldn't see my CBS affiliation. Victory!
Actually there wasn't much to report. I missed the actual tree lighting, so I don't know whether Bono made it, but I did see the fireworks display, which scared the shit out of me. Seriously, most people didn't see what I saw - the fireworks were launched from the top of the Bludhorn building and the sparks showered down the side of the building. I fully expected the whole place to go up in flames.
The actual party was divided between Stages 5 and 6, and employees were forced to walk down a narrow street that had been converted into a "Winter Wonderland," complete with blaring holiday music and fake snow showering from the building tops. At first I thought the "snow" might have been the incinerated ashes of former assistants, but it turned out to be real. Still... it could have been their frozen tears.
The food was good, and Brad Grey stocked the party with tons of carnival games. There was even an indoor Ferris Wheel. But the best part was the Diwali themed dance party in Stage 6. Several sari-clad dancers were posted around an enormous disco floor with spotlights and laser beams. Definitely gave the place a clubby, here's-my-chance-to-hook-up-with-the-hot-intern kind of vibe. When I left, a few dozen Paramounters (or 'Mounties as we call them) were getting their sweaty grind on to smooth beats of Justin Timberlake. I just hope Dreamgirls opens big and covers the cost of this debauchery.
The wristbands were silly. No one ever looked at mine. People brought their kindergartners, who almost certainly don't work here.
The festivities (well, "festivities") kicked off with BG's self-congratulatory speech about how totally rad his studio is. Suck-ups and/or plants scattered among the audience cheered now and then - "Paramount International? It's a dream come true!!!"
Then Rob Moore came up to the mike and adjusted it up from the official BG-sanctioned midget setting, and he and Gail Berman introduced the treelighters: fireworks! Trees, all lit up!
The white carpet, as expected, was fucking retarded. Not only were people packed in like Bono was really going to show (a rumor I hadn't heard, and if he did, it was after we left), but the overhead snow machines distracted us with their soap flakes, and no one looked down long enough to notice. Awesome.
The party involved an indoor ice skating rink, a ferris wheel, and some kind of Indian-themed dance area where you could eat curry and watch white men boogie down awkwardly. (So my idea of a good time.)
Thanks for the party, I guess, but it was pretty ostentatious. Just a little. With the, you know, ferris wheel. There are people who can't eat in Los Angeles blah blah blah. Who knows, though. Maybe they're planning on slicing up the white carpet and handing it out to deserving homeless dudes? Merry Christmas, guys. Have some dirty carpet.
Some more tips from the incredibly "exclusive" Paramount Christmas party! I couldn't believe I actually heard Brad Grey say these words at the tree lighting..."We have turned this studio around...We are doing GREAT movies like "NACHO LIBRE..."—- to which some of us there snickered uncontrollably, and he must have heard himself say this and went on..."which I thought was hilarious; and Babel; World Trade Center..." Anyway, it was hysterical to most of us...he said it as though he had produced "Gone with the Wind"!..AND FYI "Nacho Libre" was a Sherry Lansing Paramount project....scary that's his idea of a GREAT film! Then he had the gall to imply that they are NOW involved in charities like AIDS/WALK...FYI Earl Lestz was the FIRST person to back an AIDS/WALK with Paramount BEFORE ANYBODY in Hollywood, let alone Americ,a would even touch that charity event.... The party was not only ONLY for Paramount employees, excluding vendors, CBS, ET, and others who have been on the lot for years, BUT employees were forbidden to bring ANY GUESTS...not family members who have been allowed years before, where you actually meet OTHER people's families, instead of spending ANOTHER few hours with people you see everyday...Oh, they did have a FAMILY holiday party last Sunday — for 10-14 bucks each...CLASSY GUYS.
OH-and by the way, they had security with flashlights check every TEN FRIGGIN' FEET to see your WRISTBAND!!! All that just for a free In-and-out burger!! Whatever! Paramount is becoming the TACKIEST film studio in Hollywood history — just my humble opinion!! (along with everyone else I know who works there!!)