Why Ed Norton says "No!" to celeb swag
Ed Norton, who co-stars with Naomi Watts in "The Painted Veil," one of the best films of 2006 (and the most pathetically promoted by Warner Independent), has some choice words in New York magazine about Hollywood's Swag Hags.
Like "disgusting and shameful."
Norton is thrilled with the Academy's decision to stop the presenter goody bags after the IRS brouhaha last year. And he's gonna be even happier that the Golden Globes are also stopping the Freeby Fest.
"No presenter boxes will be given out this year," says Philip Berk, president of the HFPA. "We made a settlement for 2004 and 2005 with the IRS and in October the board decided to follow the Academy's lead. Presenter Gift Boxes are a thing of the past."
But the hotly anticipated goody bags given to guests attending the Globes are still on the table. According to Berk, "Those will contain less than $600 worth of gifts which, according to my understanding, means there are no tax implications."
But for those who want to pick out - and pay taxs on -presents, there will be a non-HFPA gifting suite open during the rehearsal weekend inside the Beverly Hilton. "We do not have anything to do with it other than to give them the presenters names and their rehearsal times," says Berk. "I do not even know who is being considered for the gifting lounge."
Well, I do.
I heard last week that Backstage Creations â€“ one of the golden oldies and the most reputable company in the freebie biz - was the top pick. "We looked at all the companies and the only one that had consistent raves from both the companies represented and the awards organizers was Karen Wood's Backstage Creations," confirms Cyd Wilson of Instyle, whose job was to find the best company for the big job.
BC founder Karen Wood just returned from an approval meeting and will shortly release the list of companies taking part in the first on-site GG gifting suite to receive presenters after they leave the stage during rehearsals on Jan. 13 and 14.