Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) today announced more than $111 million has been pledged collectively so far in connection with the star-studded Sept. 9 “roadblock” fundraising telecast in the United States and Canada. The funds pledged toward the SU2C scientific model will be directed to collaborative research utilizing SU2C’s scientific oversight in both the United States and Canada.
“Having more than 60 broadcast and cable networks and streaming platforms donate the time to air the show was record-breaking for SU2C,” said Lisa Paulsen, chief executive officer of the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF) and a member of the SU2C Council of Founders and Advisors. Stand Up To Cancer is a division of EIF, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. “That support enables us to make the public aware that lives are being saved by Stand Up To Cancer research, and we are profoundly grateful for it.”
The live telecast from The Music Center’s Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown Los Angeles, aired simultaneously over more than 60 broadcast and cable networks and streaming services across the United States and Canada. The show featured a stellar cast of celebrated figures from the worlds of entertainment, music, sports, and science, as well several cancer survivors who have benefited from SU2C-supported research.
The broadcast was executive-produced by Bradley Cooper, Academy Award-nominated actor and founder of the Bradley Charles Cooper Foundation, along with the award-winning event producers Done + Dusted in collaboration with SU2C’s production team.
“Stand Up To Cancer’s mission to accelerate cancer research may one day mean that virtually all cancer patients can become cancer survivors,” said Executive Producer Bradley Cooper, who lost his father, Charles Cooper, to lung cancer in 2011. “SU2C’s dedication to supporting patients and families through science and innovation is close to my heart. I am proud to join forces with Stand Up To Cancer to help achieve this vision and to be part of a movement dedicated to bringing lifesaving treatments to patients around the world.”
ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC, along with American Forces Network, ASPiRE, AUDIENCE Network, Bloomberg TV, Bravo, Comedy Central, Discovery Life, E! Entertainment, EPIX, ESPNEWS, FM, FS2, Fusion, FXM, Great American Country, HBO, HLN, ION Television, LMN, Logo, MLB Network, National Geographic, Pivot, RLTV, SHOWTIME, Smithsonian Channel, STARZ, STARZ ENCORE, TBS, Tr3s, VH1, and WGN America, all donated one hour of simultaneous commercial-free primetime for the telecast. For the first time, a Spanish-language version of the Stand Up To Cancer telecast aired nationally on Galavision, HBO Latino, STARZ ENCORE ESPAÑOL and Univision Deportes, and locally on Univision Puerto Rico. In addition, the show was streamed live on SU2C’s Facebook page, Yahoo, SU2C’s YouTube channel, MLB.com, and in Spanish on Univision.com. The entire telecast is now available to stream on Hulu.
The 2016 telecast also aired on all four major English-language Canadian broadcasters: CBC, City, CTV, and Global. Additionally, Canadian services AMI, Bloomberg TV Canada, Blue Ant Media, CHCH, CHEK, Fight Network, Hollywood Suite, Joytv, NTV, and TLN Television also aired the telecast, and it is available on-demand on shomi and TELUS Optik TV in Canada.
In addition to Cooper, other celebrities who appeared on the telecast include SU2C Co-Founder Katie Couric and Alison Sweeney, Allison Williams, Anna Kendrick, Ben Affleck, Ben Feldman, Bree Turner, Brenda Song, Brittany Daniel, Charlie Wilson, Chris Evans, Clayne Crawford, Colton Dunn, Danielle Campbell, Dave Franco, Dennis Haysbert, Dulé Hill, Ed Helms, Emma Stone, Eric Stonestreet, Eva Longoria, Geneva Carr, Greg Grunberg, Jacob Soboroff, Jamie Lee Curtis, Jillian Michaels, Joel McKinnon Miller, Jon Hamm, Jordana Brewster, Josh Gad, Jussie Smollett, Karla Souza, Katherine Heigl, Kathy Bates, Keesha Sharp, Ken Jeong, Kevin Hart, Klay Thompson, Kristen Wiig, Laverne Cox, Lena Dunham, Marcia Cross, Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Matt Bomer, Matthew McConaughey, Mayim Bialik, Mel B, Melanie Collins, Odette Annable, Rachel Platten, Rita Wilson, Rob Lowe, Rob Riggle, Robert Patrick, Ryan Destiny, Shannen Doherty, Sonequa Martin-Green, Tom Hanks, Tony Hale, Viola Davis, Will Arnett, William Shatner, and Zach Galifianakis.
Social Media personalities Andrea Russett, Brandon Armstrong, Brittani Louise Taylor, Gemma Stafford, Grace Helbig, Harry Hudson, Joey Graceffa, Justine Ezarik, and My Nguyen, along with entertainment and sports celebrities, interacted with viewers via Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, and YouTube, as well as on the phone during the show from a backstage center called “The Hub.” Facebook and YouTube streamed the entire telecast live. All the activity in The Hub was captured via a Facebook Live stream hosted by MSNBC Correspondent Jacob Soboroff. YouTube captured an impressive list of celebrities’ #Reasons2StandUp from the Green Room. Snapchat extended the event’s reach with a national geofilter and live story capturing the red carpet and phone bank calls. Twitter showcased the camaraderie between and support of the celebrities on a dedicated feed using the #SU2C. The @instagram account featured a special Instagram story following patient Mitch Carbon’s experience on and backstage in a live social documentary.
Musical performances during the show included Keith Urban with Little Big Town and Dierks Bentley covering David Bowie’s “Heroes” from the Academy of Country Music Honors, and songs performed by Alessia Cara, Charlie Puth and Gallant. Canadian superstar Céline Dion closed the show with a moving rendition of “Recovering,” a song given to her by Pink about rebounding from loss, which she dedicated to her husband, father and brother, all of whom died of cancer.
“We are so grateful to Bradley Cooper, one of our executive producers, and to the incredible array of people who contributed their time and talent to make the show a huge success,” said Sherry Lansing, chair of the board of EIF, a member of the SU2C CFA, and founder of the Sherry Lansing Foundation. “Hollywood has a heart, and the participation of so many wonderful performers proves it.”
The show helps fund SU2C’s groundbreaking approach to translational research, accelerating the delivery of new therapies to patients. SU2C brings together scientists from different disciplines across various institutions to work collaboratively. One hundred percent of the donations received from the general public go directly to cancer research programs.
“It’s an honor to work with so many well-respected entertainment industry leaders to raise awareness and funding for this important cause,” said Hamish Hamilton, executive producer at Done + Dusted and director of the telecast. “We are grateful for the opportunity to produce the telecast and join the SU2C movement.”
During the telecast, SU2C Co-Founder Katie Couric announced plans for a new SU2C Dream Team focused on colorectal cancer, adding to the 19 existing Dream Teams that cover more than 80 percent of cancer cases in the United States and Canada. Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the U.S. in men and women combined. The organization is also announcing two new Interception Dream Teams focused on cancers of the lung and pancreas. In coming months, Stand Up To Cancer, with support from its scientific partner, the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), will issue a new “Call for Ideas” to the scientific community seeking collaborative teams offering approaches in these three areas.
The broadcast also included inspiring stories of cancer patients who have benefited from research supported by SU2C. “It’s inspiring to share the stories of people who now lead full lives after a cancer diagnosis because of treatments available through advancements made by SU2C research,” said SU2C CFA Member Katie Couric. “We’re incredibly grateful to each and every person who contributes to this effort. When we all stand together, cancer doesn’t stand a chance.”
The three patients who appeared live on the show include:
- Mitch Carbon, 18, of Spokane, Washington, was diagnosed with an aggressive form of leukemia five years ago. He was treated but relapsed twice and had few treatment options. By watching the 2014 SU2C telecast, his parents learned of a new treatment pioneered at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) with the support of the SU2C-St. Baldrick’s Foundation Pediatric Cancer Dream Team. They took him to Philadelphia for the new treatment, which uses the body’s immune system to fight cancer, and he is now one year cancer-free.
- Woods Brown, 75, of Evart, Michigan, was diagnosed with metastatic prostate cancer and received surgery and radiation, but the cancer continued to spread. He enrolled in a clinical trial at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center that was investigating a new treatment supported by the SU2C- Prostate Cancer Foundation Prostate Cancer Dream Team on precision medicine. Brown is now considered cancer-free.
- Trina Taylor Isaac, 43, of Baltimore, was treated for colorectal cancer with surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation, but her cancer returned. She joined a clinical trial supported by the Van Andel Research Institute (VARI) – SU2C Cancer Epigenetics Dream Team that is investigating drugs that can reverse the cancer’s resistance to chemotherapy. She has seen nearly all of her tumors disappear.
Leading up to the live telecast, SU2C invited supporters to share photos or videos depicting each contributor’s personal reasons to stand up. Using the hashtag #Reasons2StandUp, the social media campaign has generated thousands of posts from people who are standing up for a friend, family member, or who have personal experience ith the disease. The telecast also featured pre-recorded messages from numerous celebrities who shared their reasons to stand up.
“We were thrilled with the way our celebrity ambassadors were able to connect with supporters through the #Reasons2StandUp campaign,” said Pamela Oas Williams, a member of SU2C’s Council of Founders and Advisors. “As the response to our social media campaign demonstrates, when such public figures reveal their personal reasons to support SU2C, it inspires their fans to become supporters, as well.”
Both #SU2C and #StandUpToCancer trended on Twitter throughout the U.S. and Canada during the broadcast.
“We believe that each and every one of us can make a difference in the fight against cancer, from individuals to foundations, philanthropists, and corporations,” said SU2C CFA Member and Robertson Schwartz Agency Co-Founder Rusty Robertson. “In addition to all the individuals who dug deep into their pockets to donate during the telecast, we are profoundly thankful to the major donors who committed to supporting SU2C’s research.”
“From emboldening the brave survivors among us who continue to fight cancer, to showcasing the tremendous success of SU2C’s work through the stories of patients who have benefited from research, our program honored the spectrum of individuals impacted by cancer on a daily basis. These results are not only tangible, but they also lay the ground work for future breakthroughs in the years to come,” said SU2C CFA member Ellen Ziffren.
Every day, cancer kills 1,800 people in the United States and Canada—more than one person every minute. SU2C was founded on the belief that the fight against cancer is at a tipping point—a pivotal juncture where transformative progress in cancer research is finally possible because of two trends: breakthroughs made in the understanding of the basic science of cancer, and technological advances that enable these breakthroughs to be translated into new treatments. Today’s cancer researchers need additional funding to fulfill the promise of life-saving discoveries, and Stand Up To Cancer engages the public to support their work.
SU2C is a major force in the development of innovative and more effective cancer treatments such as immunotherapy, which harnesses the power of the body’s own immune system to fight cancer. SU2C is supporting advancements in immunotherapy treatments for leukemia, melanoma, and cancers of the pancreas, head and neck, lung, and ovary. SU2C also supports development of precision therapies tailored to the patient’s specific genetic and molecular makeup in prostate and colorectal cancers and melanoma, among others; new technology to accelerate research; early detection of colorectal cancer; prevention of ovarian cancer; and groundbreaking work on cancer stem cells and the epigenetics (processes that control so-called “packaging” of DNA) of cancer, among other new fields.
With this telecast, since launching in 2008, more than $481 million has been pledged to support SU2C’s innovative model of collaborative cancer research. Stand Up To Cancer has brought together more than 1,200 of the leading research scientists from more than 140 leading institutions in seven countries to fund 19 Dream Teams, and six translational research teams. SU2C has also funded 36 early-career, innovative scientists carrying out high-risk projects with the potential to yield high rewards. The research is aimed at ending cancer’s reign as a leading cause of death worldwide. SU2C-funded researchers have planned, launched or completed more than 160 clinical trials involving over 9,000 patients. Work by SU2C-supported researchers has led to FDA approval of two new treatments.
“We are deeply grateful that our donors continue to support and embrace SU2C’s innovative model of research, which fosters collaboration across institutional lines and encourages researchers from different disciplines to work side-by-side,” said Sung Poblete, Ph.D., R.N., president and CEO of SU2C. “We’re proud of the meaningful advances our Dream Teams have made because of this sustained investment in our vision.”
As SU2C’s founding donor, Major League Baseball has provided both financial support and countless opportunities to build the Stand Up To Cancer grassroots movement by encouraging fans to get involved. In addition to MLB, SU2C’s “Visionary” donors include Bristol-Myers Squibb Company; Cancer Treatment Centers of America; Genentech, a member of the Roche Group; Mastercard; and The Sidney Kimmel Foundation. Major donors and collaborators include American Airlines, American Cancer Society, CVS Health, Fifth Third Bank, The Lustgarten Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research, Merck, and Rally Health. Other key supporters and collaborators include Cancer Research Institute, Cancer Research UK, Dutch Cancer Society, Farrah Fawcett Foundation, The Laura Ziskin Family Trust, Lilly Oncology, Melanoma Research Alliance, National Ovarian Cancer Coalition, Ovarian Cancer Research Fund Alliance, The Parker Foundation, Prostate Cancer Foundation, St. Baldrick’s Foundation, Van Andel Research Institute, and Breast Cancer Research Foundation. Stand Up To Cancer welcomes new supporters, the American Lung Association and Lungevity.
Collaborators providing multi-year support for SU2C Canada research through the inaugural Stand Up To Cancer Canada initiative include: Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation (CBCF), with support from CIBC; Canadian Institutes of Health Research; Cancer Stem Cell Consortium; Genome Canada; and the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research. AstraZeneca Canada and MasterCard are the first corporate supporters of SU2C Canada.
“The 1200+ scientists who conduct Stand Up’s research, the members of our Scientific Advisory Committee who guide that work, and the American Association for Cancer Research team that oversees the grants – they are our heroes. We were delighted to showcase how what they’re doing benefits people struggling with cancer through this telecast,” said SU2C CFA Member and Robertson Schwartz Agency Co-Founder Sue Schwartz.
About the Stand Up To Cancer Initiative
Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) raises funds to accelerate the pace of research to get new therapies to patients quickly and save lives now. SU2C, a program of the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF), a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, was established in 2008 by film and media leaders who utilize the industry’s resources to engage the public in supporting a new, collaborative model of cancer research, and to increase awareness about cancer prevention as well as progress being made in the fight against the disease.
Current members of the SU2C Council of Founders and Advisors (CFA) include Katie Couric, Sherry Lansing, Lisa Paulsen, Rusty Robertson, Sue Schwartz, Pamela Oas Williams, Ellen Ziffren, and Kathleen Lobb. The late co-founder Laura Ziskin executive produced both the Sept. 5, 2008, and Sept. 10, 2010, broadcasts. SU2C was formally launched on May 27, 2008. Sung Poblete, Ph.D., R.N., has served as SU2C’s president since 2011.
The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), the world’s first and largest professional organization dedicated to advancing cancer research, is the official Scientific Partner of Stand Up To Cancer. AACR is responsible for administering the grants and providing scientific oversight in conjunction with the SU2C Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC).
For more information, visit standup2cancer.org.
About the Entertainment Industry Foundation
Stand Up To Cancer is a program of the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF), the 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that serves as the collective philanthropy for the television and film businesses. EIF has distributed hundreds of millions of dollars to support programs addressing critical health, education and social issues. For more information, visit www.eifoundation.org.
About the American Association for Cancer Research
Founded in 1907, the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) is the world’s first and largest professional organization dedicated to advancing cancer research and its mission to prevent and cure cancer. AACR’s membership includes 34,000 laboratory, translational and clinical researchers; population scientists; other health care professionals; and cancer advocates residing in more than 90 countries. The AACR marshals the full spectrum of expertise of the cancer community to accelerate progress in the prevention, biology, diagnosis and treatment of cancer. As the Scientific Partner of Stand Up To Cancer, the AACR provides expert peer review, grants administration and scientific oversight of individual and team science grants in cancer research that have the potential for near-term patient benefit. For more information about the AACR, visit www.AACR.org.
Photos: Getty Images/Stand Up 2 Cancer