Adrian Grenier

My 5 Minutes with the President

Adrian Grenier has made a versatile career as an actor as well as a producer, writer, director and musician. Grenier is best known for his current role as Vincent Chase on HBO’s “Entourage” and his starring roles in feature films like “The Devil Wears Prada” and “Drive Me Crazy.” But he has produced and directed a number of short films and documentaries, including “Teenage Paparazzo,” about the relationship between celebrity and society, and the award-winning “Shot in the Dark.” Grenier is working on a new documentary, “How to Make Money Selling Drugs.” “Teenage Paparazzo” begins airing on HBO in September.

ROBIN BRONK: If you had five minutes in the Oval Office with President Obama, what would you discuss with him? What issue would you like him to know about?

ADRIAN GRENIER: I would want to discuss the role of mainstream entertainment news in politics. How has it affected people’s perception of politics and politicians? How has it enriched citizen participation or made it more cynical? What’s it like to be known as a “rock star” president — does it make him more effective, or is it an obstacle? How does he reconcile the showbiz of modern politics with real, tangible policymaking and governing? How will his celebrity affect future presidencies?

RB: If you could give President Obama one piece of advice, what would that be?

AG: When giving speeches, or holding press conferences, don’t bring plastic water bottles to the podium with you. It sends the wrong message that you embrace a disposable society. When broadcast around the world, on television and newspapers, it becomes an embedded subconscious piece of plastic product placement that seems natural and inevitable. Instead, make it a point to use glass or ceramic cups, perhaps with a subtle environmental message on it. If it is show business, stay in character as our environmental president.

RB: If you could ask President Obama one question, what would that be?

AG: Who does the set design for his presidential address from the Oval Office? Are the photos on his desk organic or with an awareness of audience perception?
RB: Would you ever consider a political career?

AG: Yes, but only once I’m done sowing the seeds of scandal that will one day prove to undermine my candidacy.

Bronk is a seasoned Capitol Hill strategist and advocate. She started her career at The Creative Coalition, a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group for the arts and entertainment industry, in July 1998. During her tenure as CEO, Bronk has taken The Creative Coalition from a New York-based entity to a national organization.