Here’s something weird about the recent Democratic convention: For the first time in decades, the Hollywood presence was hard to find. Although Oliver Stone, Billy Baldwin, and Richard Dreyfuss made appearances, fewer celebs showed up this year. And those who did (with the exception of longtime Clinton supporter Linda Bloodworth-Thomason) weren’t given very visible roles.
One reason: Hollywood has become the ”Willie Horton of the ’92 campaign,” says Danny Goldberg, senior vice president of Atlantic Records and chairman of Southern California’s ACLU Foundation. Attacked for undermining family values, the entertainment industry has become a political hot potato, making the Clinton camp reluctant to use high-profile celebs in the campaign. Warren Beatty, who reportedly has been in contact with Clinton financial director Rahm Emanuel, was conspicuously absent from the convention. ”I believe the Clinton people properly gauged a mood that the old politics don’t work,” says political insider Frank Mankiewicz. ”And Hollywood is part of that.”
But backers like Bloodworth-Thomason say Clinton has no beef with Hollywood. ”I don’t think he’s rejecting it,” she says. ”But I don’t think he’s pursuing it.”