Stand Up To Cancer

Behind the scenes at the BIG fundraiser

“I don’t think about passing away. But when I do, I am taking my LEGOS with me.” This quote, from a little boy battling cancer, is still with me after going to the taping of Stand Up To Cancer at the Shrine Auditorium. He stood up when Justin Timberlake introduced him to a huge round of applause. Producer Gwyneth Paltrow and friends got together to raise a ton of dough and support in the search for a cure for the disease. “It’s been fun to roll up my sleeves and produce,” she said. She hit the stage before taping began to rev up the crowd. Forget the applause-o-meter, the biggest response on the gasp-o-meter was when pasty Robert Pattinson ambled onto the stage (then had to be directed off) straight off his Ojai getaway. Taylor Swift sang and got everyone sniffling—even the doctors and researcher who I’d been seated with needed hankies—and Tim McGraw got a standing O for a foot-stomping performance. The phrase “a bull named Fu Manchu” is still stuck in my head. Thanks, Tim. There was a little ‘do in the parking lot following the taping where Modern Family’s Ty Burrell and Eric Stonestreet flashed their wristbands to gain access and have a bite to eat after answering phones for donations. Here’s just a sampling of who was there (Gwynie got a good crowd): Kobe Bryant, Jeremy Renner, Julia Roberts, JustinTimberlake, Samuel L. Jackson, Gabrielle Douglas, Sofia Vergara, Seth Rogen, and Jessica Biel. Some folks pre-taped and weren’t on-hand (ahem Tom Hanks and Matt Damon). You can make donations online at

Photographs courtesy Kevin Mazur and Richard Harbaugh