Cancer telethon a personal quest for producer

Tue Sep 2, 2008 11:33pm EDT
 
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By Leslie Simmons

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - For the last seven years, producer Laura Ziskin has divided her time between some of Hollywood's most high-profile brands, including the "Spider-Man" franchise and producing the Academy Awards.

But now Ziskin is taking on a project that's larger than life -- and one that could very well save hers. Ziskin, who has breast cancer, is producing "Stand Up To Cancer," a star-studded one-hour event airing Friday commercial-free on ABC, CBS and NBC simultaneously. The goal is to raise money for groundbreaking cancer treatment and research.

HOW DO YOU ENVISION "STAND UP TO CANCER" AFFECTING THE

FIGHT AGAINST THE DISEASE?

ZISKIN: Like how "An Inconvenient Truth" tipped the conversation in this country about global warming, I want to tip the conversation about cancer. But that takes money and that takes will. It takes cancer becoming part of the national agenda.

DO YOU FEEL THAT YOU HAVE A RESPONSIBILITY TO PUT THIS

TOGETHER BECAUSE OF THE POWER YOU HAVE IN THE INDUSTRY?

ZISKIN: Yes, because before I was diagnosed I didn't think about it. But then when I got diagnosed I met so many people who were dealing with it and had dealt with it. We work in this industry where we have the opportunity to reach a lot of people. We're not going to hurt anybody by doing this and we may do some good.   Continued...