Cannes ups star power at celebrity mega-party
Thu May 21, 4:18 PM
CANNES, France, May 21, 2009 (AFP) - Cannes turned up the star voltage Thursday with rapper 50 Cent and Prince due to play at a mega-party that could host the likes of Bill Clinton and Sharon Stone.
The party at the VIP Room club on the Cannes beachfront -- which opens only for the duration of the film festival -- starts at midnight and is likely to scoop up celebrities leaving a nearby star-studded AIDS fund-raiser.
The VIP Room gig is to celebrate the 51st birthday of flamboyant French designer Christian Audigier who made his fortune in the US and has stars like Madonna, Mariah Carey, Britney Spears and Puff Daddy among his clients.
Last year Michael Jackson sang at his birthday party here in Cannes, and the US singer is rumoured to be making a return trip this year.
The party follows an event earlier in the evening at the nearby Riviera town of Cap d'Antibes at which former US president Clinton's celebrated saxophone goes under the hammer.
A-list celebrities who turned up at Cap d'Antibes included Annie Lennox, who was to sing several of her hits to the 700 guests, who paid 150,000 dollars (108,000 euros) for each ten-seater table, or 4,000 dollars (2,900) per head.
Half the Cannes jury -- actresses Robin Wright Penn and Asia Argento and director James Gray -- joined the fundraiser, along with Michele Yeoh, Elisabeth Hurley, and "La Vie en Rose" star Marion Cotillard.
Models Claudia Schiffer and Eva Herzigova, the designer duo Dolce and Gabbana along with Donatella Versace added a serious splash of glamour, joined by the heiress Paris Hilton.
Clinton joined actress Sharon Stone to head this year's gala for the American Foundation for AIDS Research (AmfAR), one of Europe's main charity events, which last year raised 10 million dollars.
Many of the stars from that event are expected to head on to the birthday bash for Audigier, who began his career selling jeans on French street markets.