How many famous faces can you gather on one glorious Saturday evening for a good cause? When it is the 8th Annual Chrysalis Butterfly Ball, the answer is, “Too many to count.”
Such a big crowd probably forms each year since it is such a terrific cause (helping the 70,000 homeless currently living on the streets of L. A. to help themselves, with job training and placement); and some may come just to check out the amazing setting, the Brentwood estate of Susan Harris and Hayward Kaiser. She’s the brains behind “The Golden Girls,” so you know the place was nice.
Things started out with cocktails on the front lawn, as the “Entourage” cast gathered in anticipation of honoring Doug Ellin, who created that HBO series about to launch its sixth season on July 12. Adrian Grenier (pictured above), Kevin Dillon, Kevin Connolly, and Jerry Ferrera moved in a pack through the assembled crowd; Ferrera (“Turtle”) looking extremely trim and hanging on for dear life to his on-screen girlfriend (and obviously off-screen, too) Jamie-Lynn Sigler. Beverly d’Angelo, Rex Lee, and Perrey Reeves came along for the fun, too, but Jeremy Piven was nowhere to be seen.
Good thing, that, as once the party moved to the massive backyard and the night’s hilarious host Seth MacFarlane hit the stage set up just behind the rectangular swimming pool, Piven was part of the general skewering of Hollywood that MacFarlane wowed the crowd with; “Piven isn’t here because he’s fighting off that mercury poisoning again,” MacFarlane cracked, bringing a roar of laugher from the audience.
Pushing the limits was easy for “The Family Guy” creator, but some of MacFarlane’s jokes caused groans and even hisses from the politically correct audience that included Annette Bening, Mark Wahlberg, Angie Harmon and Jason Seahorn, but we spotted Chelsea Handler laughing uproariously as MacFarlane called “Transformers” director Michael Bay a “terrible, horrible person.” Obviously, MacFarlane has met the guy.
But despite the moneyed Hollywood types in the audience, from Lance Bass and Amanda Bynes to Courtney Love, David O. Russell, Eve, Chace Crawford, AnnaLynne McCord, and “Twilight” director Catherine Hardwicke, it was tough for MacFarlane to get any real cash for the Chrysalis cause (http://www.changelives.org/). He offered to match any $50,000 donation and add in a jump in the pool fully clothed, but no one bit until he brought it down to $15,000. Then jump he did, ending up soaking wet for the worthy cause; all in all, over half a million dollars was raised, and everyone went home happy with a stuffed goodie bag sponsored by Mercedes-Benz.