The Murdochs sure do have a lot of famous friends. More than a year after reports surfaced about the family’s trip to the River Jordan for the baptism of Rupert Murdoch and Wendi Deng’s young daughters comes the news that the getaway had a secret guest: former British prime minister Tony Blair, who was named godfather to little Grace Murdoch, now 9 years old. And of course, the timing of the revelation couldn’t be worse considering the British parliament is currently untangling the links between media and politics in News Corp.’s ongoing phone-hacking scandal. But how did Blair the Godfather go undetected for so long? Well, he was overshadowed by the other, younger A-listers.
Also on the vacation, which received a nineteen-page spread in the British tabloid Hello! (and a subsequent write-up in the New York Times), were actors Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman, who were reported at the time to be the children’s godparents, as well as Queen Rania of Jordan, who hosted the trip, country singer Keith Urban, Google co-founder Larry Page, Ivanka Trump, and her husband Jared Kushner, who owns a newspaper of his own. Everyone dressed in white, of course.
Perhaps on account of the star power, or knowing it wouldn’t look very good, Blair somehow avoided being photographed, but was outed anyway in a recent article on Deng in Vogue. And let there be no sartorial worries: Blair was said to have been “garbed in white,” too.
Another family member present for the baptism was elder Murdoch child Elisabeth and her husband Matthew Freud, whose own Rolodex and PR savvy has been credited with turning the Murdochs into the “Kennedys of London.” According to BusinessWeek, one of the couple’s most recent parties included an even more disparate array of guests:
Now that’s a family picture.
How Tony Blair was taken into the Murdoch family fold [Guardian UK]
Rupert Murdoch and Family Find Faith and Fame at the River Jordan [NYT]
Matthew Freud Will See You Now [BBW]