Guests of the exclusive pre-Oscars Night Before party at the Beverly Hills Hotel last night were sorely disappointed if they were expecting a showdown between Brad Pitt‘s babymama Angelina Jolie and his ex Jennifer Aniston. Both actresses opted out of the star-studded glitzy bash and avoided an awkward run in.
Although Brad’s ladies didn’t show, there was no shortage of celebrities at the event. Leonardo DiCaprio sat at a table with model girlfriend Bar Rafaeli and chatted with pal and Entourage star Kevin Connolly. Although Bar just graced the cover of Sports Illustrated in a teeny-weeny bikini, she certainly doesn’t starve herself to get her sleek figure. Bar was eating like she hadn’t eaten in weeks. The leggy model had almost one of every gourmet dish served at the bash — rapidly poking her fork into each dish and shoving heaping servings of food into her mouth.
In addition to Leo and crew, guests like John Malkovich wandered around the glamorous outdoor bash at the hotel’s pool area, which was covered for the party. Major Hollywood power players like Jeffrey Katzenberg and Harvey Weinstein discussed upcoming projects while Tina Fey, Amy Poehler and Will Arnett cracked jokes. At one point Amy practically wailed at something that Tina said. (Apparently, she’s hilarious off-screen as well as on.)
Although the party had plenty of star power, it was remarkably more low key than last year’s event. No gift bags were handed out and decorations were pared down. The invitation noted “casual attire.” Most men showed up in sport coats or collared shirts, but the women still opted for elegant dresses.
The soiree was not without controversy, as a swarm of protesters assembled in front of the hotel who felt the glitzy bash was not an appropriate use of the Motion Picture and Television Fund’s money — especially considering it just shut down its hospital and nursing home.
(Editor’s Note: Libby Keatinge, our gossip blogger extraordinaire, is hitting all of the parties before and after this year’s Oscars. Keep up with her latest Hollywood Gossip Dispatches and don’t forget to join us for our Live Oscars Blog Party tonight at 6:30PM EST!)