There was a strong sense of urgency among the attendees at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills as they grappled Tuesday with how to best confront a Trump administration determined to undo decades worth of environmental protection laws.
At the "Stand Up! For the Planet" event, Rob Reiner spoke with The Hollywood Reporter about why he was such a passionate believer in the Natural Resources Defense Council.
"I've been a supporter of the NRDC for a long, long time and they're the one organization that combines science and law to really, basically defending the Earth is what they do," said Reiner. "We only have one Earth; this is it. It's under attack right now with the leadership we have in the White House."
Martin Short was the MC for the evening, and he gave the audience their money's worth by dancing, singing show tunes and at one point even stripping down to a nude bodysuit. Comedians Pete Davidson, Jerrod Carmichael and Tig Notaro also took to the stage at the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts to perform standup sets for the audience.
Davidson told the audience how NRDC board member Laurie David convinced him to become more environmentally conscious. "The first time I met Laurie I had a can of Coke in my hand, and she took it and dumped it out in front of me and gave it back to me and told me to go recycle it. I never recycled before I met her," said Davidson.
The night was about more than just laughs though. NRDC president Rhea Suh delivered an impassioned statement for why the organization was so important to the future of the planet in the era of a Trump presidency.
"The NRDC was born for a moment like this, and we will fight back against arrogance and greed. We will live up to our obligations to protect the natural world. The landscapes, the water, the wildlife that have no voice. We will preserve our air, water, and climate for the next generation and the one after that. We do all of this because we believe that a healthy environment is a basic human right," she said.
The benefit raised more than $1.4 million to help fund the organization's ongoing lawsuits against the Trump administration and its attempts to overturn crucial environmental regulations.