Rambling Reporter

 

Johnny Depp Gets Petty: The crowd at the El Rey Theatre on Nov. 14 were expecting musicians to drop in to jam at Petty Fest, a charity event for the Sweet Relief Musicians Fund where celebs covered Tom Petty's greatest hits. Members of The Strokes, The Black Keys and Kings of Leon all rocked out, but nobody expected Johnny Depp -- a friend of Petty -- to show up and play guitar on "Mary Jane's Last Dance," with Ke$ha on vocals. And Depp even hung out afterward. "He was looking pretty cool," says Nick Valensi of The Strokes. "He's the closest thing to Keith Richards that you're going to get." The low point? When The Hangover and The New Normal star Justin Bartha sang "Into the Great Wide Open" off-key, then read the words out of a lyrics book.

Nate Silver's Game Change

Jay Roach (Game Change, The Campaign) has become Hollywood political director du jour, so naturally he became a Nate Silver addict during the recent campaign. Roach is obsessed with the #DrunkNateSilver tweets -- driven by Twitterites who purport to offer the analyst's views while inebriated. Recent examples: "Last night, I walked onto a maternity ward and pointed out the 53rd President of the United States. #DrunkNateSilver" and "#DrunkNateSilver broke the Petraeus/Broadwell affair on Wikipedia back in January." Speaking of David Petraeus, does Roach see a film in the philandering general's downfall? He tells THR he briefly entertained the idea but shelved it. "How can a movie be better than the real thing?" he says with a chuckle.

Springsteen's Surprise

It's clear David Geffen's the boss from the PBS American Masters documentary Inventing David Geffen -- the man invented modern moguldom. But at the L.A. premiere Nov. 13 at the Writers Guild Theater, hosted by Cher, Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson, Steven Spielberg, Kate Capshaw, Warren Beatty and Annette Bening, there was another boss present: Bruce Springsteen. Organizers tell THR he was "a walk-in." When a well-wisher congratulated him on helping to re-elect President Obama, Springsteen actually blushed. "I only had a little, little bit to do with it," he tells THR. Meanwhile, at a Spago dinner afterward, some feelings were hurt when organizers  apparently kept some of Geffen's pals off the list. Geffen himself arrived with date Oprah Winfrey and claimed to have nothing to do with the dinner guest list.

Power Lunch

Reese Witherspoon, Chelsea Handler and producer Aleen Keshishian held down a table Nov. 14 at Tower Bar. Drew Barrymore joined for dessert, swapping baby photos with Witherspoon. Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor came by to say hello. Tom Ford, David Spade, Betsy Bloomingdale and producer John Goldwyn also were in. … Christopher Nolan and his brother, writer-producer Jonathan Nolan, visited Hatfield's. Heading out, they chatted with David Fincher and Courteney Cox. … Rihanna hit Bouchon. … Steve Martin took a seat at Il Piccolino.

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