1 Here I am posing with Bob Balaban outside of the world premier of The Monuments Men. Bob is one of the stars of the show. I loved his performance in this movie and I also loved his last big film, Moonrise Kingdom.
2 The movie The Monuments Men opens in theaters today.
3 The stars of the show were lined up beneath the billboard for the press.
4 Two of the stars, George Clooney conversing with Matt Damon - This comedy drama was directed by George Clooney and was written and produced by Clooney and Grant Heslov, who produced Argo.
5 Bill Murray, Jean Dujardin, Hugh Bonneville, George Clooney, Cate Blanchett, and Matt Damon - The movie is based on the book The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History by Robert M. Edsel.
6 Bill Murray, Jean Dujardin, Hugh Bonneville, and George Clooney - The movie follows the story of the Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives program, an Allied group, set up by Roosevelt and his allies.
7 Hugh Bonneville, George Clooney, Cate Blanchette, Matt Damon, Dimitri Leonidas, and John Goodman - In the film, the Allied group is made up of seven museum directors, curators, and art historians.
8 Bill Murray, Jean Dujardin, Hugh Bonneville, George Clooney, Cate Blanchett, Matt Damon, Dimitri Leonidas, John Goodman, and Bob Balaban - Their mission was to enter Gemany with the Allied forces during the closing stages of World War II.
9 Cate Blanchett, Matt Damon, and Dimitri Leonidas - Their task was to rescue artworks plundered by the Nazis, saving them from destruction or damage, and returning them to their rightful owners.
10 Adolf Hitler was the most prolific art collector since Napoleon and acquired sculptures, paintings, and monuments the same way Napoleon did - by conquering and hoarding.
11 Some of these treasures he intended to display in a museum in his hometown of Linz, Austria. Others, especially those created by Jews, he had plans for burning.
12 Thanks to these heroes, many thousands of art objects were saved from destruction and many were returned to their rightful owners or their surviving kin.
13 Following the screening, we proceeded to The Metropolitan Club for a celebration. There were several lovely models dressed in period attire. This beauty found a comfortable place to lounge.
14 This is the great hall of the Metropolitan Club, which is faced with Numidian marble. This building, constructed in the 1890s, was designed by Stanford White in the ornate style of the Italian Renaissance. The gala was hopping!
15 In the 1890s, every man of social standing in NYC belonged to at least one of the scores of exclusive gentlemen's clubs. The Metropolitan Club was formed by distinguished men such as J. Pierpont Morgan, Cornelius Vanderbilt, and James A. Roosevelt.
16 An ice sculpture of The Monument Men
17 The grand marble staircase is 15 feet wide. It lead from the great hall to the reading room, two card rooms, a billiard room, and a library.
18 The musical entertainment for the evening played period jazz. The third floor housed the dining hall, a breakfast room, a smoking room, and three large private dining rooms. There were also 22 suites for overnight guests, a bowling alley, wine rooms, and a ladies' annex.
19 Unlike other social clubs, The Metropolitan built a separate wing for the wives and daughters of members, where they could have teas and grand dinners with socialite women. Other females who wished to take part would have to persuade their husbands to join the club.
20 The ornate gilded ceilings were painted with European-style scenes and the walls throughout were paneled with carved cherry, oak, and mahogany.
21 The ceilings were painted by French artist Perili and the American Edward E. Simmons.
22 This is Jean Dujardin - one of the movie's stars and Academy Award winner for The Artist. He brought along his brother.
23 Barry Levinson and his wife, Diana Rhodes - Barry is a friend and we have worked together on several commercials.
24 It's always great to see my friend, music industry executive, Clive Davis.