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amfAR & Dignitas to Partner on Cinema Against AIDS Toronto

Linda Evangelista, Emilio Estevez and Martin Sheen to Chair

New York, NY, September 1, 2010 – On September 12, 2010, amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research and Dignitas International will partner once again on Cinema Against AIDS Toronto during the International Film Festival. Linda Evangelista, Emilio Estevez and Martin Sheen will serve as chairs of the evening along with Julian Schnabel, amfAR Chairman Kenneth Cole, Trudy Grant, Dignitas co-founder James Orbinski, M.D., Kevin Sullivan, Stanley Tucci and Jeffery Wagstaff. The event will be co-sponsored by Kenneth Cole Reaction, Rimmel London and Sullivan Entertainment.

The black-tie gala will take place at the acclaimed Carlu in Toronto, and will include cocktails, dinner and a luxury live auction. amfAR and Dignitas will share all proceeds from the event, funding that will benefit crucial AIDS research initiatives and efforts to improve quality of life for those affected by HIV/AIDS. Over the years, amfAR has awarded 52 grants to HIV/AIDS organizations in Canada, totaling more than US$2.6 million, making Canada the recipient of more amfAR funding than any countries except the U.S. and Australia. Toronto-based Dignitas has been working in Africa since 2004 to increase access to life-saving HIV/AIDS-related prevention and treatment.

amfAR’s first Cinema Against AIDS benefit was held in Cannes during the 1993 Cannes International Film Festival and was hosted by Dame Elizabeth Taylor, amfAR’s Founding International Chairman. Since then, this annual black-tie gala has established itself as the most consistently exciting and well-publicized party held during the Cannes festival. In addition to Dame Elizabeth, who has hosted the benefit on seven occasions, amfAR Global Fundraising Chairman Sharon Stone has been a chair and auctioneer since 1995.

Cinema Against AIDS has also been held on various occasions during the Venice, Sundance, Rome, and Dubai film festivals, and in all cases these events have attracted a stunning guest list of top celebrities, entertainment industry elite, and international society. Traditionally, celebrities in the room assist with the live auction. Participants have included Ben Affleck, Prince Albert of Monaco, Lance Armstrong, Mary J. Blige, Adrien Brody, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, Naomi Campbell, Don Cheadle, George Clooney, Sofia Coppola, Penelope Cruz, Matt Damon, Catherine Deneuve, Johnny Depp, Leonardo di Caprio, Sheryl Crow, Carla Fendi, Andy Garcia, Richard Gere, Hugh Grant, Salma Hayek, Anjelica Huston, Elizabeth Hurley, Iman, Jeremy Irons, Samuel L. Jackson, Wyclef Jean, Scarlett Johansson, Milla Jovovich, Nicole Kidman, Kevin Kline, Diane Kruger, Diego Luna, David Lynch, Madonna, Sienna Miller, Liza Minnelli, Kylie Minogue, Clive Owen, Robert Pattinson, Sean Penn, Vanessa Redgrave, Natasha Richardson, Lionel Richie, Tim Robbins, Meg Ryan, Kurt Russell, Claudia Schiffer, Julian Schnabel, Monica Seles, Mira Sorvino, Sylvester Stallone, Rod Stewart, Quentin Tarantino, Charlize Theron, Sigourney Weaver, Harvey Weinstein, and Robin Williams, among others.

The film and entertainment communities have been committed and generous supporters of amfAR and the fight against AIDS since the start of the epidemic, and the Cinema Against AIDS galas have proven to be among the most high-profile and successful AIDS benefits worldwide. Since 1993, these signature amfAR events have played a pivotal role in focusing attention on the continued fight against AIDS, and have generated more than US$54 million in support of the foundation’s AIDS research programs.

About amfAR
amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research, is one of the world’s leading nonprofit organizations dedicated to the support of AIDS research, HIV prevention, treatment, education, and the advocacy of sound AIDS-related public policy. Since 1985, amfAR has invested nearly US$290 million in its programs and has awarded grants to more than 2,000 research teams worldwide.

About Dignitas International
Dignitas International is a humanitarian organization focused on dramatically increasing access to effective HIV/AIDS-related prevention, treatment, care and support in resource-limited settings through medical programs and health systems strengthening. Founded and led by Dr. James Orbinski and James Fraser, both formerly of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF/Doctors Without Borders), Dignitas is sharing evidence-based research outcomes in an effort to influence policy and improve the international response to AIDS.

Additional sponsors for Cinema Against AIDS Toronto include CBC, Foss Cadillac, Grey Goose Vodka, Joe Fresh Style and Magna International Inc.

The Fairmont Royal York is the official hotel partner of Cinema Against AIDS Toronto.

amfAR recognizes American Airlines for its commitment to the fight against AIDS and its generous support of amfAR’s mission.

Please send credential requests to Natalie Jacobs at natalie.jacobs@amfar.org or fax to 212.806.1620. Include your contact information and a detailed description of your planned coverage.

Dignitas InternationalamfAR & Dignitas to Partner on Cinema Against AIDS Toronto