One of Hollywood’s largest talent agencies has decided to cancel its famous Oscars party, and instead will host a rally protesting President Donald Trump’s travel and refugee bans.
The United Talent Agency – whose client list is a who-who of major Hollywood stardom like Anthony Hopkins, Benedict Cumberbatch, Gwyneth Paltrow and Paul Giamatti – told Variety that not only would it host a rally outside of its Beverly Hills headquarters Feb. 24, it also would donate $250,000 to the American Civil Liberties Union and the International Rescue Committee to help fight the “anti-immigrant sentiment” that is growing in the United States.
Trump’s travel ban hit close to UTA, according to a statement, because the firm represents Academy Award-winning Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhardi. Through nominated for another Oscar this year in the best foreign-language film category for The Salesman, Farhardi is skipping the awards ceremony on Feb. 26 to protect the “unjust” Trump ban.
The agency has held the annual party each year at the home of Jim Berkus, the chairman and co-founder of UTA. It typically was attended by everyone who is anyone in Hollywood, from actors to directors to writers and more.