Who says you can’t always get what you want?
None other than Mick Jagger made a surprise appearance Monday night at the L.A. Free Clinic gala honoring Paramount topper Brad Grey, whose longtime ties and influence were hard to miss inside the decked-out ballroom at the Beverly Hilton.
Jagger wasn’t there to sing but to introduce Martin Scorsese, who in turn brought Grey onstage in the event’s finale.
Scorsese is shooting a docu on the Rolling Stones for Paramount. (Band is performing tonight at Dodger Stadium.)
Usually it’s the guest of honor who gets roasted, but comedian Don Rickles decided to skewer Viacom exec chair and founder Sumner Redstone instead.
Redstone turned up for pre-dinner cocktails, but couldn’t stick around for the banquet. Taking aim at Redstone’s age and workaholic habits, Rickles quipped, “Sumner Redstone couldn’t be here tonight because it was fun.”
During the dinner, Scorsese — who recently inked a producing deal with Par — sat next to Grey at the lengthy head table. Grey’s other seatmates included his family, new boss Philippe Dauman, DreamWorks’ David Geffen and Jeffrey Katzenberg, WMA topper Jim Wiatt, producer Brian Grazer, filmmaker Oliver Stone, Daily Variety‘s Peter Bart, HBO’s Chris Albrecht, Rickles, financier Vivi Nevo, thesp Mark Wahlberg and thesp-singers Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony.
Former Viacom prexy-CEO Tom Freston was one of the dinner chairs — along with Redstone, Geffen and outgoing Univision topper Jerry Perenchio — but didn’t make an appearance. But Grey made sure to note his “pal” Freston as he offered his thanks to all involved in the evening.
Redstone stopped by to offer Grey his congrats, but had to leave before the banquet and award show, which was produced by Don Mischer.
Grey was serenaded by Anthony and, earlier, “Dreamgirls” star Jennifer Hudson. Also taking turns onstage were Zach Braff, Claire Danes and Jamie Foxx, who stars with Hudson in “Dreamgirls.”
Master of ceremonies was Bob Saget, who has known Grey since they were 22 and 21, respectively, back when Grey and his boss Harvey Weinstein co-managed Sagat.
As part of its fortieth anniversary celebration, the Free Clinic has raised more than $13.5 million. Funds will go toward building a new family and child facility. Grey has been working with the org for two decades.