Nick Jonas, Kristen Bell and others serenade Robert Iger at 'A Night at Sardi's' benefit
The event was "A Night at Sardi’s," and the honoree was Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Robert Iger. The result? Event co-chair Laurie Burrows Grad said the 19th annual gala, founded in honor of her father, Broadway legend Abe Burrows, raised north of $1.6 million for the Alzheimer's Assn.
Asked what brought him to the Beverly Hilton, producer Jerry Bruckheimer replied, "Robert Iger."
"He's the man," said Nick Jonas, who came to sing Cole Porter tunes, joining Kristen Bell, Scott Bakula, Taye Diggs, Ken Howard, Audra McDonald, Kevin McKidd, and Kaley Cuoco, Johnny Galecki, Simon Helberg, Kunal Nayyar and Jim Parsons of the "Big Bang Theory," among others.
More than 900 guests filed into the ballroom for cocktails, dinner and the musical revue. They included Jeffrey Katzenberg, Barry Meyer, Ron Meyer, Anne Sweeney, Haim Saban, Judd Apatow, Djimon Hounsou and Kimora Lee.
Patrick Dempsey, Jonah Hill, Betty White and David Hyde Pierce participated in the program, which also featured a presentation to Laura Suihkonen Jones, named Caregiver of the Year.
Seth Rogen acted as emcee for the second time, saying, "I was a little worried that they might try to get somebody else to do it this year. But lucky for me, after the Oscars, no other actor ever wants to host anything ever again."
But Rogen's reasons for coming were heartfelt. Earlier, he said his future mother-in-law suffered from the disease.
Iger accepted the Abe Burrows Entertainment Award in his mother's name. "Everything that I have, everything that I've ever done, I really owe to [my parents]. Everything that I will ever achieve I owe to them as well, because it started with their love and their support." He then described his mother's plight, saying, "It's incredibly heartbreaking to see someone that you love so much fall prey to this disease and realize that you're relatively powerless to stop it or to even slow it down."
-- Ellen Olivier
Photos, from top: Kristen Bell and Nick Jonas were among the night's performers: Credit: Alex J. Berliner / AB Images