Is the Bromance In Trouble?

Film

Ari and Joel: Bromance on the Rocks?

One of Hollywood’s most enduring — and mystifying — high-powered friendships may have finally blown up, at least for the moment. Sources tell Rambling Reporter that Endeavor CEO Ari Emanuel and longtime pal Joel Silver are no longer speaking after the famously hotheaded Lethal Weapon producer allegedly became abusive during a call with MGM film chief Courtenay Valenti and Amazon marketing chief Sue Kroll. The argument led to Silver’s exit from the streamer’s Doug Liman remake of the 1989 kickboxing classic Road House, a project Emanuel has been involved in because it stars WME client Jake Gyllenhaal and martial arts personality Conor McGregor and is considered a vehicle for UFC, part of Emanuel’s premium sports company TKO Group. Although nobody seems entirely sure why, Emanuel has for years been one of Silver’s most durable allies, sticking by him through myriad financial disasters and career downturns. It was Emanuel, in fact, who set up Silver at Amazon-owned MGM to produce Road House, along with a Shane Black caper movie, Play Dirty, starring Mark Wahlberg (which Silver has also been booted from). And Emanuel was fighting in Silver’s corner right up until the last-straw phone call with Valenti and Kroll, which is said to have revolved around whether Road House would get a theatrical release (Silver and Liman want one, Amazon doesn’t). Before that call, Emanuel went so far as to wrangle Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos into a private screening of the film, trying (but failing) to convince Bezos to intervene on Silver and Liman’s behalf. Emanuel was even said to be paying for Silver’s lawyer, Bryan Freedman (who had issued a statement on the producer’s behalf denying that he’d been “fired” from the Amazon projects), although sources close to Emanuel deny that. Says one source on the alleged rift, “Joel is upset about how this has played out and is flailing and desperate and not speaking to Ari.” Others close to both Emanuel and Silver, however, deny any falling-out. — Reported by Kim Masters

When F. Murray Abraham Dines Out, He Puts It on Oscar’s Tab

You’ve probably heard plenty of stories about all the kooky, adorably self-effacing places Oscar winners display their trophies. Timothy Hutton and Richard Dreyfuss claim to store theirs in the fridge to surprise guests when they grab a beer. Russell Crowe insists he keeps his in his chicken coop (he swears it makes the hens lay bigger eggs). But nobody has come up with a more practical storage solution than F. Murray Abraham. The 84-year-old, who picked up his trophy 40 years ago for playing Salieri in Amadeus, has been lending his Oscar to Le Baratin, a French restaurant near where he lives in New York’s West Village, to display behind its bar. In exchange, Abraham dines for free in what he describes as “the best bistro in Manhattan.” An annoyed bartender with a French accent seems somewhat less thrilled with the statuette’s location. “It’s great for the customers, who always want to touch it,” he tells Rambling Reporter, before hanging up the phone abruptly, “but not so great for me when I’m trying to make 20 cocktails.” — Andy Lewis

What’s That Smell? It’s the Hollywood Sign! 

If you’re anything like us — and we know you are! — you’ve always wanted to smell like a 100-year-old L.A. landmark. Luckily, soon everyone can, thanks to a new Hollywood Sign fragrance being launched March 8 to commem­orate the centennial anniversary of the town’s most famous monument. Actually, two Hollywood Sign fragrances are in the works — a floral, beachy-noted Sunrise for daytime wear and a more tobacco-tinged Sunset for night — both designed by top celebrity perfumer Vincenzo Spinnato, who has whipped up scents for Jennifer Lopez, Gwen Stefani and Judy Garland (or, rather, the legend’s estate). “We really wanted to unpack the experience of the city and what the Hollywood Sign represents, which is people’s dreams and aspirations,” Spinnato says. “We wanted to put all that in a bottle.” Those bottles will be available at Macy’s for $40 each. For $50 you can experience Sunrise and Sunset all at once. — Benjamin Svetkey

Frank Sinatra’s Personal Chef: He Did It His Way

Before there was Wolfgang Puck, there was Paul Posti. The midcentury chef — who claimed to have co-invented the Cobb salad at the Brown Derby — cooked for such stars as Clark Gable, Luciano Pavarotti and Elvis Presley, whom he once kicked out of the Knickerbocker Hotel’s kitchen. If he’s not better known, it’s because Frank Sinatra kept Posti to himself, as his private chef, for 24 years. Now, Posti’s longtime pastor, George Mather, has honored a promise to publish his life story after his death: “He wanted to wait, so no one could ever accuse him of using his relationship with Mr. Sinatra for profit or gain,” says Mather, co-author of the self-published Posti: War Hero, Hollywood Insider, Chef to Celebrities, and Redemption. Along with the memoir, Mather has published Posti’s secrets in Old Hollywood’s Original Recipes. Among them is Sinatra’s favorite, Spaghetti Paolino. (Add al dente pasta to mushroom-shallot-cream sauce, top with Parmesan and parsley.) — Julian Sancton

This story first appeared in the March 6 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.

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