Irena Medavoy's Hollywood Holiday: Art Basel, Sledding in Beverly Park and Christmas Eve With Schwarzenegger and Stallone (Guest Column)
The wife of 'The 33' producer Mike Medavoy partied with Pierce Brosnan and rang in the New Year to the melodies of David Foster and Eric Benet.
A version of this story first appeared in the Jan. 15 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.
The holiday season started at Art Basel in Miami, where I joined Sly and Jennifer Stallone for his art show along with Sybil Robson and Matthew Orr. At the Edition, day and night were almost Vegas-interchangeable as we stayed up until 4 a.m. just talking with people from all over the world. Lenny Kravitz came over one night to talk to Sly about his performance in Creed. The convention center was a delight of the senses, with galleries displaying art, and everywhere you turned there was a frenzy of buying. Costco for billionaires. A beautiful dinner for beloved friend Doug Cramer (yes, I did The Love Boat, didn't everyone who couldn't act?) was attended by Larry Gagosian, Karlie Kloss, Derek Blasberg and all the gorgeous, artistic Instagram people who use Valencia filter. Then it was home to L.A. for The Revenant premiere, where the talk was all about how much Leo gives to his profession and the world — it is his time for Oscar.
There is a secret about the entertainment business: We tend to be a family. And the holiday award season brings it out. Dysfunctional? Absolutely. But we are unlike any other business in how we deal with each other come awards season. When you see a great performance, a great movie, you call each other up. You root for each other. You throw parties. You send a text, an email, you want that actor, that director, the producer, the studio head to know that you are happy they took that chance. Because it means more work can be made because they succeeded.
Mike flew home from being on location in Spain (after wrapping The Promise with Oscar Isaac and Christian Bale) for Christmas. Lyndie Benson and sons Max and Noah threw a beautiful holiday party at Nobu in Malibu filled with her best friends, including Pierce Brosnan and wife Keely, Roma Downey and Mark Burnett, Lyndie's ex-husband Kenny G, and Ron and Kelly Meyer.
Cheryl and Haim Saban's holiday party was a Dickens movie come to life. Snow and sledding? No problem in Beverly Park. Christmas Eve was at the Stallones' home, which Jennifer just remodeled in elegant style, with Arnold Schwarzenegger joining in the fun.
Our son Nick had his Brentwood varsity basketball tournament in Del Mar, where we stayed at L'Auberge Del Mar for four days and cheered on the Eagles in school gyms. He'll play next year at NYU — he got in early decision, his first choice and our holiday present. And New Year's Eve was at Wally's on Canon Drive with Paul Marciano and Mareva Georges. The menu from chef David Feau, the romantic setting, Chateau d'Yquem 1989, potato and caviar, Dom Perignon to start and David Foster singing with Eric Benet, among others, brought in 2016 — very glamorous and cozy at same time.
January kicked off with the screening of Listen to Me Marlon, introduced by Laura Dern and Johnny Depp, who Rebecca Brando said was like an adopted son to her father. Johnny called it the definitive documentary on acting. Happy 2016, everyone. May health — and the Globes, the SAG Awards and the Oscars — be good to you all.