The Oscars are not just about the gowns and the jewels. Some celebs take the opportunity to raise awareness for causes near and dear to their hearts. This year, seven special stars and their advocacy of these issues caught our eye.
Julianne Moore: Alzheimer’s
Moore’s portrayal of a wife and mother in the throes of early onset Alzheimer’s disease in Still Alice earned her her fifth Oscar nomination, and she made sure to discuss the horrifying disease on the red carpet with Robin Roberts.
“I think there’s this… misnomer that dementia, Alzheimer’s, is a normal condition of aging and it’s not,” Moore said. “It’s a disease, no matter when you get it.”
According to Amobee Brand Intelligence analysis, Moore generated 64,764 social mentions and 8,040 mentions around Alzheimer’s Awareness during the Oscars.
Image: Kevin Mazur/WireImage
Cheryl Strayed and Laura Dern: Lung cancer
Cheryl Strayed wrote the memoir upon which the movie Wild was based, and in that film, Dern played Strayed’s mother, who died of lung cancer. Both women rocked rings with turquoise-colored stones to raise awareness for the disease.
Steve Carell: HeForShe Campaign
You may know it as the pet project of Emma Watson, but we learned tonight that the HeForShe campaign has another huge ally: Foxcatcher star Steve Carell, who sported HeForShe cufflinks on the red carpet. Watson was so moved that she wrote him a special note on Facebook.
Image: Steve Granitz/WireImage
Taya Kyle: Help for veterans
The widow of American Sniper inspiration Chris Kyle is in the middle of the murder trial of her husband’s alleged killer, but she still found the strength to attend the Academy Awards in honor of her hero husband and all the other veterans — and their families — who have sacrificed so much. Taya remarked that her husband would be “really happy that so much healing is happening” and that military families all over the country are “healing with this movie.”
Graham Moore: Suicide prevention
This moving moment happened not on the red carpet but on stage, when Moore accepted his award for Best Adapted Screenplay for The Imitation Game.
“I tried to commit suicide at 16 and now I’m standing here,” he said. “I would like for this moment to be for that kid out there who feels like she doesn’t fit in anywhere. You do. You do! Stay weird. Stay different, and then when it’s your turn and you are standing on this stage, please pass the same message along.”
This issue received a significant amount of discussion on social, too — and not only thanks to Graham Moore, but also Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1 director Dana Perry, who encouraged we “talk about suicide out loud.” In all, there were 36,800 social mentions around suicide prevention during the broadcast, again according to Amobee Brand Intelligence.
David Oyelowo: Ebola
Dressed in a sleek, red Dolce & Gabbana tux, he wore a #TackleEbola ribbon, which raises awareness of Ebola and supports efforts to end the crisis in West Africa.