Formal entrance gates to private Fremont Place. LA Observed file photo.
First Lady Michelle Obama was the star attraction Wednesday evening at a Democratic National Committee fundraising event at the Fremont Place home of "Everybody Loves Raymond" creator Phil Rosenthal and his wife, actress Monica Horan. Tina Daunt checked it out for the Hollywood Reporter:
Among those attending the event were Barbra Streisand and husband James Brolin, L.A. mayor Eric Garcetti, actress Doris Roberts, Tim Robbins, Paul Reiser and his family, Tennis Channel head Ken Solomon, former Motown chair Clarence Avant and his wife Jacqueline, and former CBS Entertainment exec John Matoian.
According to attendees, Obama spent part of the evening talking about education and her healthy kids initiative. The first lady posed for photos with donors paying $1,000 to attend a backyard reception at the Rosenthal mansion. Later, at a $32,400-per-person roundtable discussion in the Rosenthals' home theater, Obama focused her comments on the upcoming midterm elections, warning that the Democrats are six seats away from losing control of the Senate....
During her time in Los Angeles on Wednesday, Obama taped an interview with Ryan Seacrest. The segment, focusing on the importance of healthy eating and exercise, will air on Seacrest's nationally syndicated show on Thursday.
This was a rescheduled fundraiser from last fall — the earlier date was cancelled due to the government shutdown. Here's an excerpt of Ted Johnson's report at Variety:
The first lady, per a pool report from the event, said that “if we are truly serious about continuing to move this country forward, then we can’t just sit back and hope for the best and then be surprised and outraged when things don’t work out.”
“We need to be engaged right from the beginning and this is where all of you here tonight come in, this is your part, because there is something all of you can do right now, today, to make a difference…. You can write a check, do you hear me?”
After laughs from the crowd of about 200 people, she added, “That’s what you need to do, I’m serious, write a big fat check. Write the biggest check you can possibly write. I know some of you may be tired of always being asked for money, and I understand, because it’s not always easy to ask you for it. But we do this because writing the checks is the single most impactful thing you can do right now to affect the outcome of those midterms.”
There was a small number of protesters outside the Fremont Place gates. The media is reporting that the Rosenthal home is in Hancock Park, but Fremont Place — a gated community south of Wilshire Boulevard — is not really part of Hancock Park. It has been home to numerous Hollywood stars through the years, starting with Mary Pickford, and to political figures.