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Cuomo Makes Big Haul at Hollywood Stop

A street view of North Carmelina Dr. in Brentwood, CA., where Cuomo had his $600,000 party.
Aerial view of the Gianopulos mansion on N. Carmelina Dr.
Fox Film Chairman and CEO, Jim Gianopulos
Andrew Cuomo was the man Hollywood execs paid to see.
Steven Spielberg attended.
Steve Pigeon was a co-host.
Gary Parenti attended.

In a radio interview last week, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that extreme conservatives "have no place in the state of New York," essentially declaring, that people who don't agree with him should leave the state.

Meantime, he himself headed out of New York to California to collect tribute from the most liberal group of them all.

A wealthy Hollywood crowd gathered at the home of Fox Film Chairman and CEO Jim Gianopulos last Thursday to fete, raise money for, and celebrate the possibility that the liberal New York governor may one day become president.

The fundraiser at Gianopulos' home, a Spanish-style mansion on North Carmelina Dr. in Brentwood, allowed guests to attend, if they paid from $5,000 to $25,000 per person.

To be a host, one needed to pay $50,000 per couple or $25,000 per individual, and that entitled them to a special committee reception.

The governor arrived by day and left the state of California before the clock struck midnight.

For a ticket price of $5,000, one got to spend an hour in the governor's presence, alongside 175 others from the Hollywood set.

For a ticket price of $12,500 to $25,000, one was permitted to move into the more intimate setting - in the spacious home and gardens - after those who paid $5,000 were dismissed.

The bigger donors -who totaled about 40 - got to spend another hour with Cuomo, who spoke with groups of three or four, for five or so for a few minutes each and get their picture taken with His Excellency.

These elite folks who were dubbed "hosts" or "co-hosts" - depending on how much they paid and included DreamWorks Animation chief Jeffrey Katzenberg, Director Steven Spielberg, Paramount's Brad Grey, Sony CEO Michael Lynton, Disney chairman Alan Horn, CBS CEO Les Moonves, NBC Universal's Jeff Shell and Ron Meyer, and Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara.

Also there, as one of the hosts of the party, was none other than Western New York's Steve Pigeon, who is said to be one of Cuomo's closest political advisors. Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was also in attendance as was political adviser Gary Parenti from Niagara Falls.

It is estimated that Cuomo netted more than $600,000 in his Hollywood stop.

Cuomo has raised more than $33 million - $7 million of which has been brought in over the past six months- for his re-election campaign.

Cuomo's last fundraising trip to Los Angeles, in November of 2011, netted him $500,000 at an evening fundraiser at the home of White House decorator Michael Smith and then-HBO executive James Costos, now America's ambassador to Spain.

Among other guests at last week's party were Jonathan Glickman, Michael Lynton, Ron Meyer, Jeff Shell, Andy Spahn, Corky Hale Stoller, and Steve Tisch.

Cuomo addressed the crowd from a podium set up in Gianopulos' backyard as the people stood under heaters while Cuomo spoke about his state's tax credit program for movie and TV production, adding that he hopes to lure more of his listeners to film in New York and suggesting to some critics that he was cashing in after he successfully pushed to expand the state's film and TV production tax credit.

Cuomo also spoke disparagingly about former Gov. Eliot Spitzer, saying it was he who created a mess in Albany.

"He was great," said Katzenberg.



Niagara Falls Reporter - Publisher Frank Parlato Jr. www.niagarafallsreporter.com

Jan 28, 2014