Annual Cannes amfAR event Raises Record Amount

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the amfAR charity event at Cannes Film Festival raised $35 million for AIDS research.
Malgorzata Drewniak / Shutterstock.com

amfAR is a charity event well known for its reputation as the celebrity highlight of the Cannes Film Festival, reaffirmed its reputation Thursday night. The event, which takes place at the five-star Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc in Cap d’Antibes every year, raised a record $35 million for AIDS research. One of the items leading to the record was the sale of Damien Hirst’s gilded woolly mammoth skeleton; the “Gone but not Forgotten” work, encased in a glass box trimmed with gold, was one of the three works from the British artist put up for auction.

“I know all of you have lost someone to AIDS,” said the evening’s host, Sharon Stone. “Now we are at the beginning of the end of AIDS.”

Among all the Hollywood A-listers, Leonardo DiCaprio raised nearly $1 million by auctioning off a trip to outer space with him. The Wolf of Wall Street star auctioned a place on a 2015 Virgin Galactic space trip with him, and the once-in-a-lifetime ticket sold for approximately $956,795, according to Variety.com. Some other of the highlighted items at the extravagant gala include a pair of gloves once owned by fashion mogul Karl Lagerfeld, a collection of red ball gowns by designers from around the world and a rare 1967 Andy Warhol painting of Marilyn Monroe.

Among the celebrities in attendance were Milla Jovovich, Heidi Klum, John Travolta, Jane Fonda, Jessica Chastain, Marion Cotillard, Rosario Dawson, Justin Bieber and Michelle Rodriguez. The night also included performances by Lana Del Rey, Robin Thicke and classical star Andrea Bocelli, who dedicated My Way to late actress Dame Elizabeth Taylor, who founded amfAR in 1993.

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