May 26, 2009

Sharon Stone’s amFAR benefit gala at the 62nd annual Cannes International Film

Cannes is not all about films, celebrities, new talent discoveries, producers’ deals, paparazzi, shopping, and partying. It is also one of the most influential events in the world to promote the good and raise awareness for important worldwide issues, such as Darfur and AIDS. Yes, it’s all about business for some stars…and a bit of tan, champagne and caviar to celebrate success of raising a good sum of donations at the end.

Sharon Stone’s amfAR benefit Gala

This year on May 21, 2009 such celebrities and influencers as Stella McCartney, Sophie Coppola, Kenneth Cole, Michelle Yeoh, Annie Lennox, and Donatella Versace not only donated, but they partook in live auction, offering personal items of special value. President Bill Clinton was the honored guest at amfAR's Cinema Against AIDS. His work against HIV/AIDS has helped millions of people around the world.

The gala included a formal dinner, along with a world-renowned live auction, all to benefit amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research. Harvey Weinstein and Sharon Stone, tireless advocates for AIDS research and for amfAR, will help conduct the highly anticipated live auction with the assistance of several of the event chairs and other celebrities in attendance.

Quentin Tarantino’s much anticipated and wanted Inglorious Basterds has been one of the auction 'items' at the Sharon Stone’s and Harvey Weinstein's annual Cannes 'must-do' amFAR benefit Gala, The Foundation for AIDS Research yesterday. A private screening for 50 of Quentin Tarantino and The Weinstein Company's 'Inglourious Basterds' was followed by an exclusive after-party and three-course dinner at Cipriani Wall Street.

Other items that were up for auction this year included President Clinton's Personal Saxophone, personally autographed by Clinton for the winning bidder at the event; a one-of-a-kind Fiat 500 car, custom-designed by Renzo Rosso of Diesel; a pair of private tennis lessons, one with tennis legend Monica Seles and one with Jelena Jankovic, currently ranked fourth in the world; and a Milan Fashion Week package, including access to the most coveted shows: Missoni, Roberto Cavalli, Dolce & Gabbana, Pucci, D Squared, and more, along with two tickets to amfAR's inaugural Milan event.

Last year's live auction raised $7 million, bringing the evening's fundraising total to more than $10 million, the most a single event has raised in amfAR history. At this point, we can forgive Sharon Stone for Casino, Sliver and Basic Instinct-2. She is my personal hero now.

To learn how you can contribute to amfAR, click here.

This gala was organized and hosted with the help from Bold Films and Palisades Tartan.

(This year's celebrities attending the amFar benefit gala in Cannes)

In past years, the Cannes auction has seen legendary impromptu performances by Sir Elton John, Mary J Blige, Kylie Minogue, Robin Williams, Natalie Cole, Liza Minnelli, Sheryl Crow, Ringo Starr, Macy Gray, Milla Jovovich, and Lionel Ritchie. And who can forget every time the very brave Sharon Stone herself, who helps to energize the crowd – be it an impromptu dance or an act of a brave display of sexuality.

Cannes Film Festival amfAR Cinema Against AIDS, 2009

amfAR's annual Cinema Against AIDS galas have been important and successful fund-raising events for the Foundation since 1993, generating nearly $44 million for essential AIDS research. Past events have been chaired by Dame Elizabeth Taylor, Sharon Stone, Demi Moore, Sir Elton John, and Madonna.

Like the epidemic itself, AIDS research knows no borders. amfAR’s programs have had a global reach since 1986, when the Foundation began awarding international grants. Today, amfAR continues to fund HIV/AIDS researchers worldwide and works to translate that research into effective treatment, prevention, and education programs around the globe.

About amfAR

amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research, is one of the world’s leading nonprofit organizations dedicated to the support of AIDS research, HIV prevention, treatment education, and the advocacy of sound AIDS-related public policy. Since 1985, amfAR has invested nearly $290 million in its programs and has awarded grants to more than 2,000 research teams worldwide.

About The Weinstein Company

The Weinstein Company (TWC) was created by Bob and Harvey Weinstein, the brothers who founded Miramax Films Corporation in 1979. TWC is a multi-media company that officially launched on October 1, 2005. Dimension Films, the genre label that was founded in 1993 by Bob Weinstein, is also included under the TWC banner. Upcoming films to be released in 2009 by The Weinstein Company and Dimension Films include: Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds starring Brad Pitt, Mike Meyers, and Diane Kruger; All Good Things starring Ryan Gosling, Kirsten Dunst, and Frank Langella; H2, the sequel to Rob Zombie's 2007 reinvention of the horror classic Halloween; the highly anticipated musical Nine, directed by Rob Marshall and featuring an all-star cast including Daniel Day Lewis, Penélope Cruz, Nicole Kidman, Kate Hudson, Marion Cotillard, Sophia Loren, Judi Dench, and Stacy “Fergie” Ferguson.

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