The Dubai International Film Festival’s glitzy events continued with The Global Gift Gala at the Four Seasons Jumeirah Beach Road.
The event, now in its third year as part of DIFF, was founded by Maria Bravo and Alina Peralta, with the support of actress Eva Longoria, who is the organisation’s Honorary Chair. Its aim is to raise money for local and international charities through auctions.
This year’s charities due to benefit from the occasion are Dubai Cares, which supports 14million children in 41 countries, Sunrise K which funds research into a cure for glaucoma and The Eva Longoria Foundation for empowering women. The Global Gift Gala events take place in eight cities across the world, and the stars that turned out in Dubai included star of hip-hop TV drama Empire, Terrence Howard, and actors Michael B. Jordan, Richard Dreyfuss and Rupert Everett.
A host of exclusive live experiences were auctioned off, including the chance to visit the set of Eva Longoria’s Telenovela in Hollywood, afternoon tea at Althorp, the home of Princess Diana, with a personal tour from her brother Earl Spencer, and a fashion experience in Milan. Guests could also bid in a silent auction, using electronic tablets on the tables. Appealing to the guests to dig deep for the cause Longoria took to the stage, saying: 'People think Dubai is paved with gold but it’s so generous - it’s in its DNA.'
- Highest bid: $30,000 for Andy Warhol Dollar sign art.
- Weirdest item: Vaser liposuction session, starting bid $760.
- Coolest item: Star Wars Episode VI Return of the Jedi storyboard, starting bid $2,800
The auction was hosted by Christie’s auctioneer, Hugh Edmeades, and despite a slow start to the bidding, a total of $300,000 (Dhs1,101,855) was raised from the live event.
Guests were also treated to a piano performance by Terrence Howard, and a rousing number by Palestinian singer, Omar, who joined Howard on stage for a duet. Omar revealed to Time Out that he and Howard had come up with the song in just 10 minutes during the sound check earlier that evening.