Politics and Hollywood mingle on a cordial basis most days of the year. But on the night of the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner, the gloves come off. On Saturday night, both President Barack Obama and comedian Conan O'Brien took to the dais at the "nerd prom" -- and each took a very different approach to making the room laugh ... and blush.
Here are some of the most memorable moments:
President Obama kicked things off in high style by heading up to the microphone to the strains of DJ Khaled's rap song"All I Do Is Win." "How do you like my new entrance music?" he asked the crowd, putting on a little 'tude. "Rush Limbaugh warned you about this. Second term, baby."
'Obama,' the movie
President Obama played up his Hollywood connections with the help of Steven Spielberg. The President told the crowd that the "Lincoln" director's next project would be another presidential biopic: "Obama." "Why wait?" said the director (who was also in the audience) in a taped video piece about his follow-up to the Oscar-winning "Lincoln." And since "Lincoln's" star Daniel Day-Lewis went over so well, he was going to cast Lewis in the key role. Cut to President Obama pretending to be Daniel Day-Lewis pretending to be President Obama. "The hardest part? Trying to understand his motivations," said Obama-as-Lewis-as-Obama. Another interesting "casting" choice: "30 Rock's" Tracy Morgan as Vice President Joe Biden. We'd watch that.
The president showed he clearly has his finger on the pulse of all kinds of entertainment, referring to Jimmy Fallon's upcoming "Tonight Show" ascension and the recent kerfuffle over Beyonce and Jay-Z's trip to Cuba ("I've got 99 problems and now Jay-Z's one"). He also noted that no one from The History Channel was in attendance: "I guess they were embarrassed by the whole 'Obama is a devil' thing," he said, referring to the appearance of Satan in History's "The Bible" miniseries, and how the actor who played him seemed to resemble the president.
Conan O'Brien used his 15 minutes to zap his way through as many topics as possible, with as many one- or two-line zingers as he could manage:
- "Since (Obama's) being elected, the number of Popes has doubled, and the number of 'Tonight Show' hosts has tripled!"
- After noting that members of the cast of "Duck Dynasty" were in the audience: "That means the guys from 'Storage Wars' said 'no.'"
- And he wrapped up by proposing another made-for-TV movie -- this time a miniseries -- starring many um, familiar faces playing the president's team and colleagues. Suggestions? Vice President Joe Biden played by Bob Barker, Rep. Paul Ryan played by Mr. Bean (a character created by Rowan Atkinson) and Sen. Harry Reid "played by the old man from the 'American Gothic' painting.'" We still think Morgan's the better choice for Biden, though.
Kudos for Beantown
Casting the inevitable Obama administration movie aside, the one area the two speakers did overlap on and grow serious about was the way in which the citizens of Boston have shown their strength in adversity following the Boston Marathon bombings on April 15. Boston native O'Brien noted he had relatives in nearby Watertown, and he thanked the president for his support of the city. "It's been said recently that you don't mess with Boston," said O'Brien. "As someone who grew up there, I'd like to echo that sentiment. It's really pretty simple: If you're going to pick on a city, don't choose one where nine out of every 10 people are related to a cop."