Ricky Gervais' humor might have polarized the crowd at Sunday night's Golden Globes award ceremony, but as soon as the show wrapped, grudges seemed to have been checked at the velvet rope and the Beverly Hilton morphed into a party-hoppers' paradise.
A-listers streamed out of the ballroom — Scarlett Johansson, Halle Berry, Nicole Kidman, Christian Bale (alongside the real-life Temple Grandin) — into the hotel lobby, which was awash in a flowy mess of peach, red, emerald and black formal wear. Then, like the break at the start of a billiards game, guests quickly dispersed into one of seven lavish after-parties, all but one held under the hotel's roof.
HBO's security-tight bash (guests had to pass through two check-in points before receiving wristbands encoded with hidden HBO logos) was packed and full of heavy-hitters. Per usual, the cable network had something for everyone — such as Andrew Garfield, Sean "Diddy" Combs, Kyle Richards, Joe Manganiello and Aziz Ansari. Also spotted partying poolside: Bill Maher, Hayden Panettiere, 50 Cent, Chris Noth, Zooey Deschanel, Mike O'Malley, Bill Paxton and Jon Hamm with partner Jennifer Westfeldt. Talk about a grab bag.
HBO reliably had victories to toast — including Claire Danes' win for "Temple Grandin," Al Pacino's for "You Don't Know Jack" and Steve Buscemi's for "Boardwalk Empire."
"I was really glad to see Claire win," said Grandin by the bar. Then her eyes welled up. "But more so, I was really, really glad to see 'King's Speech' win because I felt [ Colin Firth] did a great job of showing the problems us stutterers have. And the food here is good."
New "Spider-Man" love interest Emma Stone turned up in her hit Calvin Klein gown, talking with the team from heavyweight Globe winner "The Social Network," including Aaron Sorkin and Garfield.
Manganiello stayed with his "True Blood" pack, along with fiancée Audra Marie, roaming with the likes of Sam Trammell and Rutina Wesley, while Leighton Meester of "Country Strong" charmed at the inside bar.
Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones made an appearance, only briefly, before heading off to another bash.
Upstairs, in a clear tent atop the hotel's garage was the NBC/Universal/Focus Features party. The location — the same as last year — offers sweeping views of Century City. The food was bountiful — with multiple sweets tables, carving stations and a full sushi bar — but the crowd was a bit thinner and tamer than at other, more raucous soirees.
Adrien Brody, who didn't attend or even watch the award show Sunday night, might have been the most pumped up guest at the NBC-Universal affair. He came out to support not his acting cohorts, but party co-sponsor Chrysler, for whom he'd just directed a 60-second TV commercial. The spot, his directorial debut, played for the first time during the Globes show. "I'm a true car lover," he said, yelling over a booming hip-hop mash-up. "My love of cars began as early as my love of acting. Both preceded my driver's license!"
Also spotted at the NBC party: "The Kids Are All Right" director Lisa Cholodenko, plus Mark Ruffalo, Warren Beatty, Robert Pattinson, Mandy Moore and Paris Hilton, who vamped and blew kisses to an endless barrage of flashes and a TV camera trailing her.
On another rooftop, at the Sony party, Trent Reznor cradled his new trophy for film score for "The Social Network." As he watched the revelers, he seemed genuinely happy — not necessarily the natural state for the sonic auteur behind the harrowing music of Nine Inch Nails.
"I feel spoiled by this whole thing. It was so smooth; really, there was hard work, but there really was never moments of desperation, creatively, where we were looking for ideas or approaches," Reznor said of his first major scoring project for a feature film.
InStyle threw a truly fashion-forward party. Anne Hathaway made a stunning show in her amber Armani number, leaning back in a private booth so casually that you'd have thought she was in jeans. The upcoming Academy Awards host lounged amid the likes of "Inception" director Christopher Nolan, Malin Akerman, "Desperate Housewives" diva Vanessa Williams and Molly Sims.
Pregnant ladies Natalie Portman and Jane Krakowski crossed paths there too, both chatting with InStyle magazine editor Ariel Foxman before heading to their respective studio parties. "Black Swan" beauty Mila Kunis floated in and immediately hit the bar — for java — while deep in conversation with "The Town" star Jeremy Renner.
Also seen there: Tilda Swinton and W magazine editor Lynn Hirschberg, Lea Michele of "Glee" with costar Amber Riley and "True Grit" star Hailee Steinfeld.