There seemed to be a time that, rather than go to Hollywood and take a tour bus through Beverly Hills hoping to glimpse one of the famous names of its Golden Era, one had a better chance of seeing them in Washington, D.C. That was when Ronald Reagan and his wife Nancy were in the White House, during his presidency from 1981 to 1989.
Reagan may not have been one of the great stars of the 1930s. 1940s and 1950s, when he was an active member of the acting community, but even before he ran for Governor of California in 1966, his name and face were recognizable to most of the nation and certainly among the leading lights of “old Hollywood,” those stars who endured through the decades to work, often in the lead roles, despite their age. And certainly they counted Ronald and Nancy Reagan among their closest friends.
It wasn’t merely the the ranks of “old Hollywood” types like Bob Hope, Jimmy Stewart, Frank Sinatra, Lucille Ball, Jimmy Cagney, and Claudette Colbert who could be seen coming and going at the Reagan doings, but the next generation of Hollywood “royalty,” such as Warren Beatty, Diane Keaton, and Meryl Streep who were chosen as guests to glitter up the state dinners, or came to the annual White House reception held at the time of the December Kennedy Center Honors.
Among the more interesting interactions are stories on this website involving Ronald Reagan and Bette Davis, and Nancy Reagan and Clint Eastwood, Tom Selleck and Gary Coleman. One can also find a similar article of Eighties Sitcom Stars with the Reagans.
Here’s a glimpse of just a handful of them all parading to the Reagan White House of the Eighties.
When the Reagans returned back west, home to California, they received just as warm a welcome to many thought of as being “old Hollywood” as they had given those individuals as White House guests. The apex of old Hollywood under Reagan’s reign came when the lights of the industry hosted a tribute to “Dutch” on an NBC lot in Burbank, and it proved to be the last gathering of so many names and faces familiar to those who came of age during the World War II generation. Here is that show in its entirety:
- The Last Presidential Pocket Square It being President’s… (putthison.com)
- Krugman vs. Reagan (nationalreview.com)
- 10 interesting facts on President Ronald Reagan’s birthday (constitutioncenter.org)
- Exclusive – Reagan Biographer: Rove’s Claimed Ties to Gipper ‘Clearly Untrue’ (breitbart.com)
- Reagan: Through liberal eyes (humanevents.com)
- ‘Rove never worked for Reagan!’ (wnd.com)
- Ronald Reagan biographers attack his portrayal in The Butler (theguardian.com)
- Bushes Praise Anti-Reagan Film ‘The Butler’ (breitbart.com)
- “The Butler” director Lee Daniels, Harvey Weinstein defend portrayal of President Reagan in film (cbsnews.com)