An unnamed bidder at Thursday night’s amFAR Cinema Against AIDS Charity auction paid $1.5 million for a trip into outer space with Leonardo DiCaprio during the group’s 20th anniversary gala at the Hotel du Cap-Eden Roc.
A few minutes later, after a lot of encouragement from guest emcee Sharon Stone, another couple paid $2.3 for two seats on the same Virgin Galactic voyage. All told, the evening brought in $25 million for the cause, up from $11 million last year.
All three astronauts will spend three days in training with DiCaprio in Texas and then sit next to him when they blast into the stratosphere aboard one of Sir Richard Branson’s new fleet of spaceships.
The galactic adventure was the brainchild of amFAR benefit veteran Harvey Weinstein. Earlier in the evening, the same deep pockets that shelled out the $1.5 million to be DiCaprio’s space partner also paid another $1.5 million for a complete “Oscars experience” – which includes attending the premiere of Di Caprio’s upcoming film for director Martin Scorsese, The Wolf of Wall Street, and a date with Heidi Klum.
Stone called DiCaprio the “Greater Gatsby” while thanking him for volunteering his time to amFAR.