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President Donald Trump’s fundraising dinner party on Tuesday at an undisclosed location will be very un-Hollywood compared to similar soirees honoring his predecessor, Barack Obama, where the entertainment industry’s elite would show up en masse.
Trump’s surrogates have thus far done a remarkable job in keeping the venue — in or near Beverly Hills — a secret.
Attendees have provided their Social Security numbers to the president’s security team and assured the powers that be that they’d not reveal details of the event, according to people who spoke to The Hollywood Reporter on condition of anonymity.
While some of the attendees may have financed film projects here and there, their connection to the industry is tenuous, and it’s likely there will be very few — if any — famous faces to gawk at, outside of Trump himself.
“This fundraiser could have been held in St. Louis,” said one person invited to the party. “What an insult to Hollywood that it’s being treated as nothing special.”
The secretive nature of the event, nestled as it is in a gated community, is by design, as Southern California isn’t exactly Trump country. Several Facebook groups, in fact, are already planning protests, even though they won’t know the president’s exact whereabouts.
“The atmosphere in Hollywood is so toxic — you wouldn’t know unless you were on the receiving end of it,” quipped one industry invitee when asked about the unusual level of secrecy. “We’re not talking about classy people like Cary Grant and Lauren Bacall; they’re worried that some nobody actor will scream ‘motherfucker’ at the president.”
While the cheapest ticket runs $35,000, or $50,000 for a couple ($100,000 if the couple wants a photo with Trump), some are encouraged to donate up to $250,000 to go to a variety of conservative causes (and paying the maximum gets donors a roundtable discussion with the president).
On the other hand, there will be some at the party who paid nothing, invited because Trump wants to meet with them or reward them for past support.
“Obama would come to town with 30 cars and close down Wilshire Boulevard, but Trump’s people want to get in and out quickly,” said one person with knowledge of the event, which is being co-hosted by RNC chairwoman Ronna McDaniel, finance chairman Todd Ricketts and deputy finance chair Elliott Broidy.
Broidy, for one, has some Hollywood connections, as he has been linked to a Malaysian graft scheme that has also ensnared actor Leonardo DiCaprio.
“You’d be surprised at the lack of star power,” said one person familiar with Tuesday night’s guest list, which includes roughly 90 names.
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