Hospital celebrates anniversary with philanthropy
A little peer pressure can go a long way, particularly when it means Variety using its peer-to-peer relationship with the industry to help raise awareness of philanthropic causes through the publication’s first-ever Power of Youth event.
Some of Hollywood’s top young talents — including Miley Cyrus, Andrea Bowen, Angus T. Jones, Tyler James Williams and Elijah Kelley — hit the Globe Theater on the Universal backlot Saturday from noon to 3 to lead a fete packed with games, performances — and lots of food.
“This event was created because Variety has the access and ability to reach the next generation of Hollywood and encourage these performers — who are influencers of popular culture — to be philanthropic and make a difference,” says Variety associate publisher Brian Gott, who is the driving force behind the event.
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital benefits from the event and an online auction of items donated by the Hollywood community — including set visits to “Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader,” “Heroes” and other series, movie premiere packages, VIP tickets to “American Idol” and other shows, plus luxury goodies and personal items from stars — shepherded by Charity Folks.
Guests at the event also will have a chance to bid, while the public can participate at Variety.com/auction now through Oct. 19.
St. Jude’s was an easy choice for this inaugural event. “St. Jude’s entertainment ties, all the way back to Danny Thomas’ relationship with Variety when St. Jude was founded 45 years ago (and specifically with Variety columnist Army Archerd), made it a natural fit,” Gott says. Marlo Thomas, who has carried on her father Danny’s legacy at St. Jude’s, also will be a part of the festivities.
More than 70 young actors sit on Variety’s Youth Advisory Board, which is chaired by NBC Entertainment/Universal Media Studios co-chair Ben Silverman.
“We felt that Ben was a great example of a generation of Hollywood that is making a difference. He indicated he is a big fan of St. Jude’s and offered to help however he could for this effort,” says Gott, adding that “everyone at NBC Universal was amazing, from Ron Meyer to Ben Silverman and (NBC U chief) Jeff Zucker, to (NBC U TV Group publicity exec VP) Rebecca Marks. They came together and helped make this a reality.”