D.C. Lobbying Presence in Hollywood During Emmy Awards Weekend
While the words, "The Amazing Race," "Modern Family," "Mad Men," "The Good Wife" and "The Kennedys," read like chapter headings in a book about our nation's capital, they are, in fact, names of TV shows or movies that earned Primetime Emmy Awards Sept. 18 in a place called Hollywood.
With occasional appearances before Congress, at the Kennedy Center or in a downtown restaurant, denizens of Georgetown, Foggy Bottom and Capitol Hill are acquainted with a few of these actors, actresses, directors and producers but know little of the inner-workings of their powerful TV and film industry, those dream factories, in a state called California.
Luckily, D.C. had some knowledgeable representation out there during Emmy Awards weekend. Businesswoman Elizabeth Webster is newly employed as director of business outreach at the District's Committee for Small and Local Business Development which oversees the Commission on Motion Pictures and Television Development, chaired by At-large Councilman Vincent Orange. So, Webster reached out to Los Angeles, attending pre- and after-parties and the awards show during a trip that she planned and paid for before her District government job began. She is also well known as secretary of the Georgetown Business Association.
"My favorite part of the Emmy Awards show was Michael Bolton's performance and the beautiful, colorful staging throughout the show," said Webster, who, like many, wore a red dress to the show. "I thought Melissa McCarthy was very down to earth. I could relate to her comments in her speech about her parents' endless support of her career."
Clearly in her element, Webster, a former actress and model, spoke of meeting friends and former colleagues at the Governor's Ball, HBO's after-party, the NBC party at Spago's in Beverly Hills and the Vanity Fair pre-party in West Hollywood. She said she was also glad to see longtime and family friend, actor Vincent De Paul, a former Marylander who lives in L.A. and whose sister lives in Georgetown.
En route back, Webster said she is preparing for public hearings before the District Council on Nov. 9, 10 a.m., with "studio executives and experts in the entertainment industry to testify about what incentives and requirements D.C. needs to implement to be more movie- and production-friendly." Orange and his TV-film team have set a goal of getting two permanent TV series to be produced regularly out of DC. as well as increasing film production. (Mayor Vincent Gray and Orange last met with film executives in L.A. on July 21.)
Aside from rushing to fly home from sunny Southern California so soon, Webster was asked, any other vexations? "Betty White should have won in her category."