Charlize Theron, Bill Clinton Help Sean Penn Raise $6 Million for Haiti

Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher also attended the annual gala

By Marc Malkin Jan 11, 2015 8:52 AMTags
Sean Penn, Charlize Theron Dan Steinberg/Invision/AP

Sean Penn did it again last night.

The Oscar winner gathered some of his richest and most famous friends at the Montage Beverly Hills for his annual pre-Golden Globes benefit his Haiti relief organization, J/P HRO.

The four-hour gala raised a whopping $6 million to continue efforts to rebuild Haiti after it was hit by an earthquake five years ago.

"It's essential support," Penn told me. "At a certain point when there's a disaster or a conflict in an area, there are grant monies for organizations like ours but they dry up pretty quickly when you move into a development phase and so this particular night is essential to keep the work that we do going."

Penn's Oscar winning girlfriend, Charlize Theron, was right by his side. She stunned in a little flapper-esque black dress and Harry Winston jewels. The couple posed on the carpet for photographers, but Theron gave Penn a short kiss before heading into the ballroom to let Penn doing handful of interviews.

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for J/P Haitian Relief Organization

Bill Clinton was not only a surprise guest, but he was also honored by Penn. At their table, Theron sat in between Penn and the former president, who stayed for the entire evening, agreeing to dozens of selfies almost every time he got out of his seat.

New parents Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher made a rare public appearance, but kept a low profile at a table in the book of the ballroom with Rachel Zoe and Soleil Moon Frye.

During the live auction, Ben Stiller won a Rachel Zoe fashion experience for $150,000.

Chris Martin performed two songs (he was solo because the rest of Coldplay was in the U.K.), but cracked, "I spent so much money at last year's auction, I had to get a second job."

When the total for the evening hit $5.8 million, Penn said he wouldn't let the last act go on until the crowd helped make it an even $6 million.

It didn't take long for Penn to introduce the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Reese Witherspoon danced, jumped up and down and shouted throughout the rockers' performance. While they danced last year to U2, Penn and Theron enjoyed this year's show from their seats. The Milk star stroked Theron's back as she laid her head on his shoulders.

"I've been so in awe of the work [Penn] does in Haiti," Witherspoon gushed. "He doesn't just talk and just raise money. He actually gets down there and helps build schools, communities and hospitals."