BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — As the host of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s annual grants dinner, Chelsea Handler said she relished the chance to leave political talk aside for an evening of good news.
“Let’s celebrate the three things Donald Trump hates the most: Foreigners, the press and actually giving money to charity,” Handler said Wednesday at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, where more than a dozen film and TV stars helped the group behind the Golden Globe Awards share proceeds from the show with some 55 film schools and arts organizations.
Dustin Hoffman, Patrick Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Ava DuVernay, Elizabeth Moss, Chrissy Metz, Bob Odenkirk, Anthony Mackie and Mark Hamill were among the entertainers who appeared to discuss the various charities that benefit from HFPA grants.
Stan Lee seemed to enjoy the spotlight, playfully going off-script as he appeared alongside “Black Panther” star Chadwick Boseman.
“I got news for you: I’m half deaf and half blind, so forgive whatever I say,” the 94-year-old Marvel mastermind said as he took the stage. “Chad is gonna be my crutch, so be kind to him. I need the guy.”
They accepted a grant on behalf of California Institute of the Arts and introduced a video about how the funds would support aspiring filmmakers there.
“The best thing about it is I’m going to get every single one of them to leave a space for a cameo for me,” said Lee, who famously appears in every Marvel movie.
“The Big Sick” star Kumail Nanjiani and “I Love Dick” star Kathryn Hahn bantered about mashing up their projects’ titles before presenting grants to the Zimmer Children’s Museum and the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s young filmmaker’s program.
“This is the worst segue of all time,” Nanjiani said. “A bunch of penis jokes and then here’s…”
“Children,” Hahn said, laughing.
Hoffman announced a grant to the Film Foundation, Martin Scorsese’s film restoration and preservation effort. Hoffman said HFPA has given more than $5 million to the organization to date, financing the restoration of 90 films.
Stewart, who presented a gift to Film Aid, which screens movies in refugee camps, said he was unaware of the HFPA’s philanthropy until he was asked to appear Wednesday. The group has given more than $30 million over the past 25 years.
“It is truly remarkable, and I commend it,” Stewart said.
Pattinson presented a $200,000 donation to the Committee to Protect Journalists, which Meryl Streep mentioned in her Golden Globes acceptance speech earlier this year. Hamill announced a $2 million endowment for University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, adding that his daughter Chelsea is a magna cum laude alumna.
Other beneficiaries of HFPA grants include Ghetto Film School, the Lollipop Theater Network, Global Girl Media, American Film Institute, Inner City Arts and the Sundance Institute.
The celebrity presenters handed out $2.8 million in grants during the hourlong ceremony; each onstage for less than two minutes.
“That’s what we call efficiency,” Handler said.
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