Celebs take on cancer causes

GOOD MORNING: As the King in “The King and I” said, “Is a puzzlement!” I received calls independently from two different press agents in the firm of Rogers & Cowan. The good-intention’d praisers, without knowledge of each other asked me to speak to two different clients — who had similar, but independent raisons d’etre. One client I was asked to interview was Claudia Schiffer. The other, Lilly Tartikoff. Schiffer was to shed light on the L’Oreal (her boss) sponsored “Super Saturday (Nov. 18) L.A.” benefit fundraiser for the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund. Tartikoff would tell me of the 10th anniversary “Fire & Ice Ball-1990-2000” to benefit the Revlon/UCLA Women’s Cancer Research Program — for breast and ovarian cancer. Tartikoff is cohost with Ellen Barkin and Ron Perelman and Jane and Terry Semel. Susan (Mrs. Don) Mischer produces this evening at the BevHilton which will be transformed into the Stork Club. CMGI, a global Internet and investing company, funds the show’s cost. And once again Perelman’s Revlon contributes $1.2 million. Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox Arquette and Lisa Kudrow serve as hosts, Burt Bacharach will entertain. For the Super Saturday L.A. benefit, Tracey Ullman, Meg Ryan, Julianne Moore, Rob Lowe and Calista Flockhart host on the New York Street back lot at Paramount. L’Oreal has made a $100,000 donation to fund the research program. Super Saturday was launched in the summer of 1998 in the Hamptons and at Par will feature a giant designer garage sale, kids carnival, rides, raffle and auction. Lilly Tartikoff and Susan Mischer knew nothing of the other celeb-studded, cancer research-pitched benefit being held within weeks of their Fire & Ice Ball. Nor did they know that Rogers & Cowan was publicizing the other as well. But, Tartikoff told me, “I hope they raise a lot of money for a good cause as well.” She reminds that her event has been a collaborative philanthropic effort (Ron Perelman), brilliant scientists (led by UCLA’s Dr. Slamon) and — Hollywood. It has achieved the first FDA-approved non-toxic treatment of cancer with Herceptin. “This is not just a party and celebration — we show results,” she reminded. In the past week alone, Lilly said two of her friends have called to say they have breast cancer and asked for help … Claudia Schiffer told me she winged in from Munich for the event on behalf of L’Oreal “to help raise awareness of ovarian cancer. “I know many women who have had cancer,” she said sadly. Schiffer returns to commercials for L’Oreal next month in Paris and London. She did not work during the strike, saying her sponsor re-edited old commercials. She recently broke up with fiancee Tim Jeffreis. But she is wearing a new diamond — several. They are on a new, diamond -studded Ovale watch from Bulgari that she says is a gift from her friends, the Bulgari family whom she just visited in Europe.

TWO-TIME OSCAR WINNERS Rabbi Marvin Hier and Richard Trank intro’d the L.A. premiere Monday p.m. at the Directors Guild of Moriah Films’ “In Search of Peace, Part One: 1948-1967” the story of the new nation Israel. As Hier said, “This is not a commercial for Israel — we want to show it warts and all.” And it does indeed do that — plus cheers and tears. And one cannot help but wonder as you watch the telling of the conflict in the past 50 years — if we are not seeing history repeat itself. The amazing film had its preem in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv last month, followed by N.Y. on, Oct. 25, and is off to preem dates in Florida and a dozen U.S. cities, as well as Canada. On hand Monday was Merv Adelson, chairman of the Wiesenthal Center’s executive committee, who also heads Moriah Films Trustees’ Liaison. A three-minute film about Moriah preceded the screening of “In Search of Peace” — it included scenes from the Academy Awards when Moriah’s “Genocide” and “The Long Way Home” won Oscars. Among the SRO audience, Wiesenthal trustees Roland Arnall, William Belzberg, Jack Nagel and Sid Sheinberg.

THE WHITE ROSE AWARD winners Tuesday night at the N.Y. Marriott Marquis were Barbara and Gerald Levin, Tracie and John Pepper and Phil Donahue and Marlo Thomas (the latter duo no doubt still arguing about his vote for Ralph Nader — she was a staunch Gore-getter). Marlo shifts all of her energies back into showbiz now as she produces-stars in CBS’ “Two Against Time” — while continuing her recurring role in “Ally McBeal” … Oscar-winning producer Bruce Cohen (“American Beauty”) has a sensahuma — he went along with Johnny Walker Scotch’s “Royal Blue” hosting the bash at the Hollywood loft by donning all blue himself (as scantily clad bikini’d dancers whirled by). And these pals showed up for the party: Oscar-winner Hilary Swank, Marisa Tomei, Tony-winner Alan Cumming, Emmy winner Allison Janney, Ellen DeGeneres, Neve Campbell, etc. Cohen told me “It was all in fun and I happen to love scotch and started in college with Johnny Walker!” But not at the new, blue $200 a bottle. Cohen and partner Dan Jinks are also awaiting strike-threatened projects’ go date: “Big Fish” to be directed by Steven Spielberg at Col-DreamWorks and “Down With Love” for Fox 2000 … Add another commercial touch: At the Children’s United Nations event at the Santa Monica Pier, Brownie Points (Brownies) not only donated their goodies to the hefty celeb crowd, but are now donating a percentage of their sales to the CUN charities and to several other kids’ charities.

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