LL Cool J hosts Silver Circle Gala honoring Leslie Moonves

LL Cool J hosts Silver Circle Gala honoring Leslie Moonves
LL Cool J, left, and honoree Leslie Moonves attend the Venice Family Clinic's 33rd Silver Circle Gala in Beverly Hills. (Jason Kempin / Getty Images)

The event: LL Cool J brought a burst of star light to Monday's Silver Circle Gala, as host of the Venice Family Clinic's 33rd annual fundraiser.

Sponsored by the UCLA Health System and the David Geffen School of Medicine, the affair honored CBS President and Chief Executive Leslie Moonves and philanthropists Dr. Bill Resnick and Michael Stubbs.

Moonves heaped praise on the “NCIS: Los Angeles” star during ceremonies at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, calling him “CBS’ and the Moonves family’s go-to guy,” adding, “If Kanye West ran up these stairs, he [Cool J] would tackle him before he got to me.”

The crowd: Television sitcom creator Chuck Lorre, L.A. County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl and Venice Clinic CEO Liz Forer presented the awards before an audience of actors and entertainment VIPs. Among the crowd were Gina Rodriguez, Jaime Camil and Justin Baldoni of “Jane the Virgin”; Matthew Perry and Thomas Lennon of “The Odd Couple”; Pauley Perrette of “NCIS”; actor Peter Fonda; television personality Julie Chen (Mrs. Moonves); Warner Bros. chairman and CEO Kevin Tsujihara; Sony Pictures Television President Steve Mosko; and producers Brian Grazer and Jerry Bruckheimer.


For the Record

March 11, 4:45 p.m.: An earlier version of this article misspelled actor Justin Baldoni's last name as Boldoni.


Julie Liker, Harley Liker, Rebecca Pollack Parker and Hutch Parker acted as chairs with committee members Neal Baer, Christine Griffiths, Chester Griffiths, Jeff Nathanson, Judy Shore, David Shore and Susan Tick.

The program: Following the awards, recording star Josh Groban brought the evening to a close with five screen and show tunes "to honor," he said, "what has now become probably the most successful stagehand in the history of existence," referring to Moonves' early years working in theater. His choices for the occasion?  "Pure Imagination" from "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory"; "Children Will Listen" from "Into the Woods"; "Not While I'm Around" from "Sweeney Todd" ; "What I Did for Love" from "A Chorus Line"; and finally, "Over the Rainbow" from "The Wizard of Oz."

Quotes of note: "I have enough money to say whatever the hell I want about Les Moonves," joked Lorre --  creator of "The Big Bang Theory" and "Two and a Half Men," which have been huge hits for CBS. He went on to speak of the entertainment mogul's acts of kindness.

"He understands it's the moments that we reach out to someone, to anyone, and make their life a little better. It's those moments that define who we are that's what the Venice Family Clinic is all about. It's what they do every single day," said Lorre.

In accepting the award, Moonves said he was honored to be able to help a deserving cause. "To all the actors who are out there, and writers, and agents, and producers, I want to congratulate the Venice Family Clinic. It was very smart to time this event in the middle of pilot season, when we're giving out favors -- or not," he joked.

The numbers: Proceeds from the 840 guests topped $1.6 million to fund primary healthcare for people in need at 10 health centers in and near Venice.

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