Hugs, kisses, a massage and a vampire bite — stars were desperate to sell to the highest bidder at the amfAR Gala at the Cap D’Antibes.
In an attempt to raise money on Thursday at the Cinema Against AIDS auction, celebrity presenters threw in bribes to persuade the well-dressed audience to part with their money, trying to achieve a target of US$10 million.
Held at the exclusive Hotel Du Cap, overlooking the sea, Janet Jackson, Alec Baldwin, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Kylie Minogue, Gerard Butler and Kim Kardashian all attended the black-tie event.
Heidi Klum offered a massage, Diane Kruger donated the services of her boyfriend Joshua Jackson, Vampire Diaries starlet Nina Dobrev said she would willingly bite a bidder and Chris Tucker did a mini Michael Jackson dance routine — all to win people over and get them opening their wallets.
Many references were made to the troubled European financial climate — appropriately, Aloe Blacc took to the stage to sing I Need a Dollar, while Jessie J performed Price Tag. However, austerity measures were not encouraged.
Diners watching the auction take place on stage in a large marquee were asked to empty their bank accounts buying an Andy Warhol Marilyn Monroe print, the chance to star in a short film by Karl Lagerfeld, a private match with Novak Djokovic or a holiday on Lake Como.
For the first time at the French amfAR auction, there was also a fashion show.
Models strutted on a catwalk between dining tables to show off 24 outfits, selected by former Vogue editor Carine Roitfeld to create the “Perfect Black Wardrobe.”
Containing designs by Chanel, Dior, Armani, Kenneth Cole, Lanvin, Valentino, Tom Ford and Louis Vuitton — the winning bidder paid 320,000 euros (US$401,200) to have them made in a size of her choosing.
The final total for the items under the hammer was still being calculated — although it seems likely that the celebrity sales people would easily reach their US$10 million target.