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INTO THE NIGHT / RSVP

It Was Voter Registration, Hollywood-Style

August 23, 1995|BILL HIGGINS | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

The Scene: Monday's premiere of HBO's "Truman" at the Paramount studio theater with a festive, campaign-style lawn party after the screening. As a tie-in with the film's theme, the evening was co-hosted by the Hollywood Women's Political Committee. Said HWPC executive director Lara Bergthold: "This is an opportunity to celebrate our political commitment without any chance of losing an election."

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Who Was There: The film's star, Gary Sinise, co-star Diana Scarwid, director Frank Pierson, executive producer Paula Weinstein, and HBO execs Bob Cooper and Richard Waltzer; plus 800 guests, including Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, Lt. Gov. Gray Davis, Ethan Hawke, Richard Masur, Marilyn and Alan Bergman, Kevin Anderson and Sen. Barbara Boxer, who said she wanted President Clinton to see the film because "Harry Truman took the issues that the Democrats always fought for and brought them to the people unadulterated: We're for you. We're for the average person against the special interests. We'll stand up and fight for you."

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Pastimes: Because of the connection with the HWPC, a voter registration table was set up. "This is the Hollywood version of the motor voter bill," said Howard Bragman. "You drive up, a valet takes your car, the paparazzi take your picture, you see a movie, have a light supper and then you register to vote."

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Quoted: Said Hanks of Sinise, "I've gotten to watch this guy in the theater, I've been able to share moments on the screen with him and what he's got is an absolute, rock-solid integrity and honesty that gives heart to a character. You can't fake it. You can't fake honesty. That's why I've hooked myself to his bandwagon."

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Overheard: "Couldn't they find an actress who looked like Eleanor Roosevelt?" asked one guest. "Or do you not want to say to a woman, 'You know, you look just like Eleanor Roosevelt.' "

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Best Conversation Stopper: While a small group of guests were talking about Sinise and other actors in the Steppenwolf Theater Co., one of them chimed in with: "Well, you know, John Malkovich was my bus driver in grammar school."

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Hollywood Wisdom: Two theaters on the lot were used. In a case like this, one is always for the "A" crowd. "What distinguishes this theater from that theater? I'm afraid to ask," said a producer looking at his ticket. "Maybe I'm going to the wrong one."

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