Michael Wolff invited fifty people from News Corp to his book party last night celebrating his biography of Rupert Murdoch, The Man Who Owns the News, at Milk Studios in West Chelsea, but none of them showed.
“None of them RSVP’d, none of them said yes or no,” he said last night, while speaking to a reporter, Gabriel Snyder from Gawker, Gawker czar Nick Denton and David Carey, the group president of Condé Nast.
We couldn’t even find News Corp spokesman Gary Ginsberg!
Well, truth be told, one person did reply to his invite: New York Post editor Col Allan who told Mr. Wolff to lose his e-mail address and never to write again.
We’ll take that as a ‘no.’
Much was made of how Mr. Wolff’s party had to be rescheduled for Tuesday night instead of Monday so it wouldn’t conflict with Wendi Murdoch’s blowout birthday party at the Gramercy hotel on Monday.
Invites were sent out a few weeks ago saying the party was scheduled for Monday, before a new email said it would be Tuesday.
Everyone figured, Okay, scheduling conflict!
So we got excited we’d see the Murdochs. But we were confused when we couldn’t find the Murdochs.
Mr. Wolff said that was all a big misunderstanding.
“We just made a mistake,” he said. “It really wasn’t for the eighth [Monday], but it was was always for ninth [Tuesday], and then someone came along said, ‘Oh! That must have come that because…'”
“Look, the truth is we had no idea,” he continued.
In any event, he said the door was open for Mr. Murdoch.
“We’re waiting,” said Mr. Wolff.
Once we got off that topic, we talked about what Mr. Murdoch likes and dislikes. Apparently there are only a couple people he likes in media.
“Well, you know Rupert really likes Si [Newhouse],” he said. “There are very, very, very few people Rupert likes. In fact, I can name Silvio Berlusconi and Si. That’s it.”
“He not only knows Si, they almost got into business a few times,” he continued. “He tried to get Si to buy FOX with him.”
“He talked about everybody with me, and there’s no one he refused to talk about. The only two people that he said nice things about were Si Newhouse and Silvio Berlusconi.”
Why did he like Si so much, we asked?
“Rupert likes people who have really, really, really, a lot, a great amount of money,” he said.
Mr. Wolff’s party took place in the Penthouse of Milk Studios and offered a delightful outdoor deck with views of New Jersey, which looked lovely. The party had an open bar of red and white wine and champagne that went beyond the 8:30 p.m. closing time for the party. Even though the Murdochs were a no-show, the party had plenty of media people: in addition to Messrs. Denton, Snyder, and Carey, we saw Time, Inc. managing editor Jim Kelly, The New York Times‘ Nick Confessore, New York Magazine‘s Jesse Oxfeld, Portfolio‘s David Margolick, Jeff Bercovici and Lloyd Grove, and NBC’s Jonathan Wald.
Another person we bumped into was Michael Jackson, who we heard had recently given up his title of president of programming at Barry Diller‘s IAC. He’s now a senior advisor.
“I’m working for the larger IAC on various projects, and I’m doing something myself,” he said.
What’s he working on?
“I can’t say yet!” he said.
So why the new position?
“IAC is concentrating very much on its search business,” he said. “There’s less room for smaller, start-up content businesses.”
After talking with Mr. Jackson a bit, we took another look around the room. Still no sign of Rupert.