Oscars weekend: Women in Film salutes this year’s female nominees at pre-Oscars bash

Oscar nominees Yalitza Aparicio, front, and Glenn Close attend the 12th Women in Film Oscar Nominees Party at Spring Place in Beverly Hills on Friday.

Amid their jam-packed, pre-Oscars party schedules, actress nominees Glenn Close, Regina King, Marina de Tavira and Yalitza Aparicio took time to drop into the 12th annual Women in Film Oscar Nominees Party.

“This is an amazing night,” said the event’s co-host, Cathy Schulman, in her official welcome to guests. “There are 61 female nominees this year. … An all-time high.” An Oscar winner herself for “Crash,” she then cited 17 repeat nominees and three women now up for two Academy Awards this year.


The event

Held Friday at the private club Spring Place in Beverly Hills, Women in Film’s pre-Oscars affair honored female Academy Award contenders, both in front of and behind the cameras, including producers, screenwriters, sound mixers, editors, makeup artists, hairstylists and others.

The crowd

Also co-hosted by three-time Oscar-winning costume designer Sandy Powell, up this year for “The Favourite” and “Mary Poppins Returns,” the many nominees on scene included “The Favourite” producer Ceci Dempsey, “Roma” producer Gabriela Rodriguez, “A Star Is Born” producer Lynette Howell Taylor and “I’ll Fight” songwriter Diane Warren for the documentary “RBG.”


Among others there to cheer on Oscar hopefuls were actors Kate Bosworth, Eva Longoria, Angela Bassett, Our Lady J, Kiki Layne, Jaime King, Connie Britton, Felicity Huffman, Rumer Willis, Lake Bell, Nikki Reed, Justin Baldoni, Emily Baldoni, David Harbour, Angela Sarafyan, Nia Vardalos, Madelaine Petsch, Louise Roe and Ashley Madekwe.

The scene

Given the battalion of actresses, costume designers and other industry VIPs present, there was no shortage of beautifully dressed guests punctuating the gathering, many outfitted for the cocktail affair by the night’s presenting sponsor Max Mara.

Yet in this stylish sea, there were definitely a few standouts, among them Rita Ora, who managed to ratchet up the night’s glamour quotient in her floor-length gown of black lace and feathers. Now an actress as well as a recording superstar, the British singer-songwriter will soon appear in the upcoming “Pokémon Detective Pikachu.”

As servers passed cheeseburger sliders and veggie spring rolls, guests mingled by the bar, seated themselves beside a towering potted palm or checked out the vanilla and chocolate desserts in a side room featuring an ice sculpture of a Chloe wine bottle.

The quotes

WIF executive director Kirsten Schaffer called the event “our version of the golf course.” “So enjoy it,” she told the crowd, microphone in hand, “and use this time to connect with your colleagues and to build new, more inclusive networks.”


After watching the “class of 2019” nominees mass for pictures, actress Frances Fisher said, “It’s so great to see the stage overflowing with creative women, many of them below-the-line, who don’t always get recognition for their talent and hard work.”

Ellen Olivier is the founder of Society News LA.

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