A Trump-Free 'Nerd Prom' 2: Spicey, Mooch and Playboy

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From left: Lester Holt, Shiri Appleby, Kamala Harris, Kevin Bacon and Kellyanne Conway.

The White House Correspondents' Dinner is a long way from regaining its Obama-era "cachet," but Hollywood and media still mingle with newbie hosts (Hefner) and buzzy guests (Scaramucci, Avenatti).

"Another quiet year,” says one plugged-in annual attendee of the upcoming White House Correspondents’ Dinner. That fate was sealed April 6, when President Donald Trump again bowed out (though he’d said last April, “I would come next year, absolutely”).

Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Kellyanne Conway are among White House staffers planning to attend April 28, and former Trumper Sean Spicer tells THR he’ll hit a few parties but not the “nerd prom” itself (“It’s somewhat lost its cachet”). While Hollywood guests will be sparse at the main event, look for media, stars and The Mooch at these key soirees.

Thursday, April 26
Bytes & Bylines, whose five hosts include Layer3 TV’s Eric Kuhn (a UTA alum), goes down at the Irish ambassador's residence, while over at the Naval Heritage Center, Ruth Bader Ginsburg is expected to show for a screening of her biodoc, RBG, with CNN’s Dana Bash moderating a filmmaker chat.

Friday, April 27
Atlantic media chair David Bradley’s annual dinner hosts Sec. of Defense James Mattis and chef Jose Andres; Capitol File throws its shindig, with Kathy Griffin and Jeff Glor among those slated to attend, at The Kreeger Museum; British Ambassador Sir Kim Darroch and Lady Darroch invite guests including Spicer, Conway, Chris Matthews and Norah O'Donnell to "Come Together" at their Massachusetts Avenue residence; Shiri Appleby and Alyssa Milano hit the Creative Coalition’s Mayflower Hotel gala (Sen. Kamala Harris is among the hosts); Kevin Bacon’s Bacon Brothers rock the White House Correspondents’ Jam at The Hamilton Live, along with NBC’s Lester Holt and The Rough Cuts; and UTA’s Jay Sures and Mediaite’s Dan Abrams fete WHCD emcee Michelle Wolf, CNN’s Anderson Cooper, ABC’s David Muir and more late-night at Fiola Mare, with guests to include Anthony Scaramucci.

Saturday, April 28
Tammy Haddad co-hosts brunch with Greta Van Sustern and John Cole at a private home, with Jordan Klepper, Don Lemon and L.A. Times owner Patrick Soon-Shiong expected to make the scene. Among the night-of bashes, including NBC/ MSNBC at the Art Museum of the Americas and Atlantic Media/CBS, The Washington Post, Cenk Uygur's The Young Turks and Reuters — all at spaces in the Hilton, where the dinner takes place — is a saucy new player: Playboy. Its “No Tie” afterparty is hosted by Cooper Hefner, who says he has “no intention of just raising our flag and throwing a traditional party.” No chance of Stormy Daniels; she declined multiple WHCD weekend invites, says her attorney, Michael Avenatti, who’ll be the AP’s guest at the dinner.

Sunday, April 29
Two brunches round out the festivities for wrung-out journos: CNN's Political Hangover at Longview Gallery and Reuters' event at the Hay-Adams' Top of the Hay.

This story first appeared in the April 25 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.