Stand Up to Cancer Returns to Television in September
In 2008, the late Laura Ziskin was a driving force behind the unique event called Stand Up To Cancer, a fundraiser in which all monies received were donated to cancer research. The television special was broadcast live on all three major networks as well as a host of other channels. Some even reran the event later that night. It was a spectacle that had the three main news anchors from ABC, CBS, and NBC joining forces on the same platform to try to raise the awareness and funding for cancer. That year, the organization's anthem of "Just Stand Up" was sung by an all-star female group that included Carrie Underwood, Mariah Carey, and Beyonce. Patrick Swayze, battling pancreatic cancer, made an inspirational appearance, asking the crowd and those at home to stand up with him to fight cancer. The crowd did. Sadly, Swayze died in September 2009.
Two years later, Ziskin again rallied the support of the Big 3 networks and a slew of others for another celebrity event. More performances and a videotaped message from Michael Douglas was played. He was fighting cancer of the throat, which he has apparently beaten.
This year, Stand Up To Cancer is returning for another cooperative event. The major networks, along with HBO, Logo, Lifetime Movie Network, VH1, and several others, will be offering up an hour of commercial-free time. The event will be held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles on September 7. Taking over for Zuskin, who passed away in June 2011 of cancer, are Gwenyth Paltrow and Joel Gallenís Tenth Planet Productions.