Cancer benefit unspools in Beverly Hills

A group of industryites and scientists converged on the Paley Center in Beverly Hills early Wednesday to launch the Stand Up to Cancer campaign.

Co-founder Sherry Lansing, who lost her mother to ovarian cancer 24 years ago, introduced the initiative, which will bring together various Hollywood-based cancer efforts under one umbrella cause, with all the funds raised going directly to research.

Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig was on hand to announce a $10 million donation, which marks the largest single gift ever given by the league.

Producer Laura Ziskin, who has battled breast cancer, called the disease “a ubiquitous terrorist.” She told the packed audience — including Christina Ricci, Dennis Quaid and Melissa Etheridge — “This is the terrorist we should find and disarm.”

Meanwhile, on the East Coast, the three evening network news anchors — CBS’ Katie Couric, ABC’s Charles Gibson and NBC’s Brian Williams — united to spread the word on the network morning shows that the Big Three will simulcast a one-hour primetime special on Sept. 5 to raise money for the cause.

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