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Vanity Fair Oscar Party Exits Sunset Tower; Will It Land in Parking Lot? (Exclusive)

The magazine's star-filled soiree has been held at the Sunset Boulevard venue since 2009.

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The most star-studded Academy Awards afterparty is decamping for new digs -- possibly in a parking lot, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

Vanity Fair's March 2, 2014, event -- considered one of the most sought-after tickets during awards season -- will not be held at Sunset Tower, site of the magazine's glittery Oscar party since 2009. Instead, VF editor Graydon Carter is said to be eyeing an outdoor parking facility on nearby Sunset Plaza, a West Hollywood parcel boasting sweeping city views similar to those of the hotel the publication is leaving behind. Sunset Tower owner Jeff Klein recently informed his staff of Carter's decision, according to a source.

Klein declined to comment. Vanity Fair did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

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The change of venue is said to be motivated by a desire to accommodate a larger party. VF's guest list already is known to soar above 1,000 people. Before Sunset Tower, the party was held at the much larger (and since shuttered) Morton's in West Hollywood. When making the move during the recession in 2008, Carter said, “The party will be a much more intimate affair than in years past; we’re going to scale back the guest list considerably."

The Oscar party move comes at a tenuous moment in the magazine's relationship with Hollywood. It lately has angered key figures with reporting on Tom Cruise and Scientology, Brad Pitt and his troubled production of World War Z and Gwyneth Paltrow and her personal life.

Despite Vanity Fair’s reputation for its glossy embrace of Hollywood, the magazine is perceived in the entertainment industry as a distinctly New York entity. Ever since it birthed its first Oscar party in 1994 as a successor to the late agent Irving "Swifty" Lazar's event, VF has found shelter in industry-insider haunts, first at Morton's with producer Steve Tisch as a co-host (he later stepped aside) and then Sunset Tower. Laments one source: "Now, it’s in this soulless parking lot."

Although Sunset Tower no longer will host Vanity Fair’s soiree, it continues to be the site of CAA’s no-press-allowed Golden Globes and Grammy parties -- two A-list-only events boasting similar star power, if far less renown.

Email: Gary.Baum@thr.com
Twitter: @GaryMBaum

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