The star-studded “Hope for Haiti Now” telethon Friday has raised more than $57 million, while the telecast album became the biggest one-day preorder in iTunes history.
The money raised for the earthquake relief fund came in the first 24 hours after it aired live on more than 50 domestic networks and in 60 countries. It also does not include proceeds from online music downloads of the broadcast, which featured headline performances by Wyclef Jean, Madonna, Bruce Springsteen, Jennifer Hudson, Mary J. Blige, Shakira, Sting, Alicia Keys, Christina Aguilera and several others.
“The public has set a new standard of giving for a relief telethon with ‘Hope for Haiti Now,’?” said Lisa Paulsen, prexy and CEO of the Entertainment Industry Foundation, which is ensuring proper fiduciary oversight and administration of all donated funds.
The “Hope for Haiti Now” album became the No. 1 iTunes recording in 18 countries. The studio version of “Stranded (Haiti Mon Amour),” the original track performed by Bono, the Edge, Jay-Z and Rihanna during “Hope for Haiti Now,” rose to become the No. 1 song on iTunes in 12 countries.
CNN’s Anderson Cooper had by far the greatest presence on the show, appearing numerous times with live updates from Haiti.
The two-hour broadcast followed a consistent format: a reverent musical performance would alternate with a celebrity using an anecdote to appeal for earthquake aid, a Cooper segment, and an eavesdrop into a phone conversation between a donor and celebrity operators such as Julia Roberts or Steven Spielberg.
“Hope for Haiti Now” will accept donations for six months at hopeforhaitinow.org as well as by phone, text message and mail.
Entertainment bizzers gathered on Sunday at writer-director Paul Haggis and his wife Deborah’s Santa Monica house for a $5,000 per-person fund-raiser for Artists for Peace and Justice.
Among the guests at Haggis’ event were Daniel Craig, Gerard Butler, Nicole Kidman, Amy Pascal, Rick Nicita, Paula Wagner and Lee Daniels. Haggis and thesp Maria Bello spoke of their trip this week to Haiti to assist in disaster relief efforts. Moby, Sheryl Crow, Jackson Browne and Macy Gray performed at the brunch-concert.
(Steven Gaydos contributed to this report.)