The old adage claims that laughter is the best medicine, and Sept. 5’s “Stand Up to Cancer” telecast will have that in spades. It also contains tremendous star power, as first wave of participating entertainers proves.
Jennifer Aniston, Jon Hamm, Will Ferrell, Ben Stiller and Rob Lowe are just a handful of the stars joining host Katie Couric in the digital lounge next month. Also involved are Gwyneth Paltrow, Reese Witherspoon, Pierce Brosnan, Halle Berry, Kiefer Sutherland, Mark Harmon, Danny McBride, Eric Stonestreet, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Tony Hale, Dane Cook, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Marg Helgenberger, Matt Passmore, Rob Riggle, Italia Ricci and Bree Turner.
The Who, Jennifer Hudson, Lupe Fiasco & Common, Ariana Grande, and Dave Matthews are slated to perform.
Stars in the digital lounge will reach out to viewers via phone, Facebook, Instagram and other social media platforms through the new “We’re Calling You” campaign, which supporters can sign up for at werecallingyou.org. Several promo videos for the initiative are embedded below.
Paltrow and Joel Gallen of Tenth Planet Productions are co-executive producing the broadcast, live from the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles, Calif. ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC and a slew of cable channels are running it commercial-free. The event will also stream on Hulu and Yahoo.
This is the fourth SU2C telecast. To date, more than $261 million has been pledged to support the causes cancer research programs.
“Since we started Stand Up To Cancer in 2008, social media has exploded, creating a whole new way to connect,” said Couric, a Stand Up To Cancer co-founder. “So in an unprecedented way, we’ll have plenty of stars reaching out to donors via social media, thanking them through Facebook messages, digital shout outs, Instagrams and tweets. In other words, this year, we are so 2014!”
“Cancer affects us all,” added Paltrow, who lost her father, Bruce Paltrow, to oral cancer in 2002, “and each and every person can help the scientists who are working 24/7 to save more lives. We want to get that message out in as many ways as possible, so we’re excited to use social media to reach supporters from all over who are helping to grow the Stand Up To Cancer movement, and hopefully, get even more people to stand up with us.”
Watch some promo videos featuring Tony Hale, Eric Stonestreet, and the stars of “Game of Thrones” and “True Blood”: