Starting at 8pm tonight, this two-hour, music and celebrity benefit telecast will air live to the East Coast, tape delayed on the West, on NBC, USA,
Bravo, Trio, SCI FI, PAX, Telemundo, MSNBC and CNBC with phone
lines remaining open throughout the evening at 1-800-HELP-NOW.
Musical performances by
Mary J. Blige
Scheduled appearances by Halle Berry, Kevin Spacey, Usher, George Clooney, Uma Thurman, Matt Damon, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Michael Douglas, Bruce Willis, Danny DeVito, Rhea Perlman, Tim Robbins, Eric McCormack, Sean Hayes, Jay Leno, Drew Barrymore and a special message from Former Presidents George Bush & Bill Clinton.
Funds raised through this special will support the American Red Cross two-phased assistance plan which includes specialized relief immediately and over the long term in the following areas: Food and safe water; healthcare and disease prevention; immediate family supplies; mental health counseling; disaster preparedness and prevention measures.
You may also click the banner below to donate directly to the International Response Fund via the American Red Cross website.
AP was there for rehearsals:
- Nelly followed Kenny Chesney in rehearsal Friday on a hastily decorated soundstage and George Clooney juggled phone bank logistics for a TV benefit for tsunami victims.
….Clooney, who responded to NBC’s call for help in organizing the event, will be working a celebrity phone bank at NBC Universal along with fellow actors including Brad Pitt, Johnny Depp, Renee Zellweger, Robert DeNiro, Andy Garcia and Goldie Hawn.
“No one is doing it to get famous and to get attention,” Clooney said. “They’re doing it because they know they can bring attention” to the need.
….”We thought it was the right thing to do,” said NBC Universal Television Group chief Jeff Zucker, who mustered the company’s resources. “I think we’re gratified at how many people stepped up and volunteered. Everyone has been so selfless in this.”
All donations will go to the American Red Cross International Response Fund. Pledges will not be tallied Saturday night but a total will be announced later, NBC Universal said.
….Besides the high-profile celebrities, about 600 people were racing to put the production together; it was announced less than two weeks ago.
“If you get a couple of big-hitters first, then that sort of starts the ball rolling,” Clooney said, citing participants President Clinton and President George H.W. Bush.
“Then you call up Clint Eastwood and Morgan Freeman and they go, ‘I’m in,'” Clooney said.
….It’s crucial to call on the public’s generosity now, even as other news stories begin to eclipse the tragedy, Gaspin and Clooney said. The financial need will grow as survivors fight disease and lack of resources and infrastructure, they said.
“It’s incumbent on all of us as human beings to participate,” Clooney said. “Because if we don’t, then we’re going to be looking at a much greater tragedy than we are right now.”