|March 7, 2006
Sir Elton John and David Furnish Raise Close to $3M at 14th Annual Academy Awards Viewing Dinner and After Party to Benefit the Elton John AIDS Foundation
LOS ANGELES – Sir Elton John and David Furnish hosted the 14th Annual Academy Award® Viewing Dinner and After-Party to benefit the Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF) along with co-sponsors Audi, Chopard and VH1 on Sunday, March 5, 2006 at the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood, CA. The event rose close to $3 million, more than double the amount of last year’s event. To cap off the evening, Sir Elton John and three-time Grammy winner John Legend performed together.
The Elton John AIDS Foundation party is one of the most important events on Oscar® night as it brings together the biggest names in the entertainment industry to raise money for one very worthy cause, the fight against HIV/AIDS. This year’s guests included Sharon Stone, Prince, Lindsay Lohan, Salma Hayek, Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor, George Lucas, Oscar-Winner Gustavo Santiago, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Mary J. Blige, Donatella Versace, Chris Kattan, Diane Kruger, Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, Eric McCormack, John Leguizamo, Ludacris, Rachel Griffiths, Josh Groban, Al Roker, Olympic Gold Medalists Apollo Anton Ono and Shaun White, Olympic Silver Medalist Sasha Cohen, Eve, Molly Sims, Jennifer Esposito, Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne, Paris Hilton, Nikki Hilton, Pamela Anderson, Nicollette Sheridan, Michael Bolton, Helena Christensen, Amber Valetta, Aisha Tyler, Nicole Richie, Alexis Bledel, Alyssa Milano, Anne Heche, Camryn Manheim, Carmen Electra, Cheryl Tiegs, David LaChapelle, Eddie Van Halen, Elisabeth Rohm, Garcelle Beauvais-Nilon, Haylie Duff, January Jones, Jenna Elfman, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Kelly Carlson, Kelly Rowan, Laura Harring, Macy Gray, Maggie Grace, Melina Kanakaredes, Melissa George, Michelle Rodriguez, Lisa Rinna & Harry Hamlin, Natasha Henstridge, Patricia Hearst, Regina Hall, Samaire Armstrong, Tori Spelling, and Tracee Ellis Ross among others.
Upon arrival, dinner guests were asked to fill out ballots guessing who would win Academy Awards in each category – Eric McCormack and his wife, Janet, separately guessed the most correct answers and each took home an Elton John series Chopard watch. Adding additional excitement to the evening was a live auction that took place immediately followed dinner. Two 2007 Audi Q7s – the first to be sold in the United States and Canada - were auctioned off to raise funds for the Foundation. After the first car was auctioned for $160,000, Audi put a second Q7 up for auction raising an additional $120,000. Another exciting moment of the evening came when Sharon Stone pushed the minimum bid on Sir Elton John’s red Yamaha grand piano, which is available at www.ebay.com/ejaf, up to $170,000. In total, the event raised close to $3 Million for the Elton John AIDS Foundation.
This year’s Event Co-Chairs included Dame Elizabeth Taylor, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, Nicole Kidman, Donatella Versace, Jeffrey and Marilyn Katzenberg, Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne, Sharon Stone, Sheryl Crow, Barbara Davis, Audi Board Member for Marketing and Sales Ralph Weyler, Chopard President Caroline Gruosi-Scheufele, and VH1 General Manager Tom Calderone.
Well-known event designer J. Ben Bourgeois from Los Angeles-based event production company, J. Ben Bourgeois Productions, transformed the “Outdoor Plaza” of the Pacific Design Center into a lavish and warm environment using hints of periwinkle and chocolate brown staged in a custom-built circular tent. Guests arrived at 4:00pm for a cocktail reception followed by a five-course dinner and viewing of the 78th Academy Awards® telecast. Immediately following the viewing guests, and after party guests, gathered to celebrate the night’s biggest winners.
ELTON JOHN AIDS FOUNDATION: Since its establishment in 1992 by Founder and Chairman Sir Elton John, the Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF) has raised over $80 million to support HIV/AIDS prevention and service programs in 55 countries around the globe. Today, EJAF is one of the world’s leading nonprofit HIV/AIDS organizations. EJAF focuses on supporting community-based prevention education programs, harm reduction programs, and direct services to persons living with HIV/AIDS, especially populations with special needs. These efforts include HIV/AIDS-related physical and mental health services, HIV testing and counseling, street outreach and education, food distribution, assisted living services, social service coordination, and community volunteer recruitment and support.
AUDI OF AMERICA, INC.: Audi’s history in America dates to 1969, when the brand was first introduced to the U.S. market. Today, a network of over 260 Audi dealers currently offers a line of premium vehicles that include the innovative Audi A3; the sporty A4 sedan, Avant and Cabriolet models; the high performance S4 sedan, Avant and Cabriolet models; the design-leading A6 sedan and Avant; the all-new Audi Q7 performance SUV (available June 2006); the all-aluminum Audi A8; and the award-winning TT Coupe and Roadster. Audi of America is headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan, and markets a line of luxury cars built in plants in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm, Germany and Györ, Hungary. The parent company, Audi AG, is headquartered in Ingolstadt, Germany.
CHOPARD: There are few jewelers in the world whose designs are immediately recognizable. At the forefront of that list is Chopard. For over 140 years, the “World of Chopard” has embraced elegance, originality and individuality. Renowned internationally for its award-winning “Happy Diamonds” creations, the Chopard collection also includes an array of designs that adorn celebrities around the world. Meticulously crafted in Geneva, Switzerland since 1860, Chopard has distinguished itself worldwide for luxurious jewels and impeccably crafted, high-precision time pieces that embody imaginative design and sophistication. For further information, 1.800.CHOPARD or visit www.chopard.com
VH1: VH1 connects viewers to the music, artists, and pop culture that matter to them most with series, specials, live events, exclusive online content, and public affairs initiatives. VH1 is available in 88 million households in the U.S. VH1 also has an array of digital services including VH1 Classic, VH1 Soul, VH Uno, and VH1 Country. Connect with VH1 at http:// HYPERLINK "http://www.VH1.com" www.VH1.com. VH1 is a registered trademark of MTV Networks, a unit of Viacom International Inc. MTV Networks also operates and offers joint ventures, licensing agreements, and syndication deals whereby its programming can be seen worldwide.