Penn not only hosted the third annual Help Haiti Home Gala in Beverley Hills but also donated two important collectors items that made up a quarter of the money of all the money raised.
Sean Penn / Getty
It’s been a busy week for Beverley Hills this week, with most of Hollywood’s leading stars casting an eye on events taking place on Sunday at the Golden Globes awards.
However, to their credit, some of the biggest names in the entertainment industry came out in force to provide Sean Penn their support for his third annual Help Haiti Home Gala held in the Montage Hotel. Beverley Hills.
Among those present were Bette Midler, Julia Roberts, Gwyneth Paltrow, Chris Martin, Chris Hemsworth, Goldie Hawn, Michael Douglas, Piers Morgan, Chelsea Handler, Sarah Silverman, Keven Bacon, Kathryn Bigelow as well as Oscar winning actress, Charlize Theron, who stood out from the crowd more than usual in her role as Penn’s reputed latest flame.
The cream of Hollywood not only graced the event with their presence, but also by bringing their check books, which at the end of the evening were lighter by $6 million, on its way to help the people of the earthquake devastated island of Haiti.
Among the highlights of the evening was when a sculpture, commissioned by Penn and created by Jeff Koons made up from his collection of the actor and director’s collection of 65 discarded firearms went on the block. After some serious competition, Anderson Cooper, anchor man of the CNN news show Anderson Cooper 360° made the winning bid, paying out of $1.4 million to take home the sculpture.
Not long after, another, and considerably more prized possession of Penn’s was also auctioned off. This time around it was an Nineteen Sixties Chevrolet El Camino pick up from Sean’s vintage car collection, that fetched an impressive $100, 000 from an unnamed buyer at Saturday’s auction.
There was also a lot of friendly rivalry in the room, when an exclusive piece of art donated by Banksy, a UK based and internationally renowned graffiti artist came up for sale. Among those putting their hands up as the bids shot up were Bette Midler and Kevin Bacon, but the winner was Chris Martin, lead singer of UK pop band Coldplay, and husband of Gwyneth Paltrow, who eventually paid out $650, 000 for the modern work of art despite some strong bidding, especially from Charlize Theron.
During the course of the evening, the auction guests were treated to an impromptu performance by Irish rock band U2, who came together to perform for the first time in four years, playing a few of their classic hits.
Penn formed the Haitian Relief Organization in the wake of the 2010 earthquake to provide emergency care and sustainable shelter and education to the people of the Caribbean island.
Following the event, a satisfied Sean Penn stated his hopes that the organization he founded will gradually become obsolete over the years as the island and its inhabitants recover from the trauma.
Sean Penn is a two-time Academy Award winner for his roles in Mystic River and Milk as well as the recipient of a Golden Globe Award for Mystic River and a Screen Actors Guild Award for Milk.
In addition to his humanitarian work for the people of Haiti, Penn also extended his tremendous drive and energy in helping the people of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina devastated the city and its surrounding areas in 2005.