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HOH’s One-Minute Recess: Stars Start Coming Out for WHCA Dinner

The Motion Picture Association of America knows its audience.

The guests leaving MPAA’s White House Correspondents Association dinner preparty Friday night were given goodie bags featuring politically themed DVDs. Among the films offered up — along with a shortbread cookie stamped with a white chocolate MPAA logo — were “Broadcast News,” “The Pelican Brief” and a set of “Dave,” “My Fellow Americans,” “The American President” and “Wag the Dog.”

Newly named MPAA chairman, former Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.), worked the crowd of journalists, political hands and DC celebrities. (Seen schmoozing: Sam Donaldson, Al Hunt, Jake and Jennifer Tapper, Margaret Carlson and Steve Scully). As for the rest of the actual celebrities most of DC’s elite were hoping to rub elbows with, they must have been at the New Yorker party.

The MPAA event was designed to honor the White House dinner’s emcee, Seth Meyers of Saturday Night Live.

One insider who chatted with Meyers said he is the most down-to-earth star yet to lead the dinner.
Several former Dodd staffers from both his Hill office and short-lived presidential campaign were spotted mingling, with one quipping that their former boss’ new gig allowed for some sweet perks.

Dodd’s office wall featured a photo of himself with President Barack Obama, along with a black-and-white image of the late Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) waving a “Dodd for Vice President” sign and other historical photos marking his decades of political service.

Guests noshed on small plates from Mike Isabella of Top Chef fame as he manned a station laying out white spoons of what he called a “refreshing” bite of the Italian fish bronzino. Isabella told Roll Call he’s excited for the June opening of his new restaurant Graffiato in DC’s Penn Quarter.

Also on the menu – lamb skewers, tiny beef sandwiches, a shot glass of green soup, a chicken ravioli and 6-foot-long spread of cheeses and meats. Dessert, passed on a tray, was a multi-colored mango cookie.