Bob Saget’s longtime friends John Mayer, Jeff Ross, Jimmy Kimmel and Dave Chappelle gathered on Wednesday to honor the late comedian, supporting a cause he’s been part of for 30 years.
Mayer, Ross and Kimmel hosted the Scleroderma Research Foundation’s annual fundraising event “Cool Comedy, Hot Cuisine” in Beverly Hills, which also served as an evening of tribute to Saget, who died in January at age 65 after an accidental injury. slap on the head.
The Full room actor has been a passionate supporter of the Scleroderma Research Foundation since he lost his sister Gay to the disease in 1994 – a rare and often life-threatening autoimmune disease that can cause fibrosis in the skin and other vital organs. Saget joined the Scleroderma Research Foundation’s board of directors in 2003, but he began his involvement in 1991 through “Cool Comedy, Hot Cuisine” – as a participant, performer, and ultimately a key figure in organizing and producing the event.
This year, Kimmel kicked off the night of sentimentality and dark humor in his place, teasing that “these bookings have really improved a lot since Bob passed away,” with Bill Burr, Rosie O’Donnell and Kathy Griffin among the stand-ups on hand. Kimmel brought Ross and Mayer out to follow him; Mayer noted how “this is the first time I’ve come to a scleroderma benefit where Bob didn’t ask me, like Jimmy said, to do this event, but then apologized profusely as he asked me to do this event. ”
He continued, “What’s so great about tonight, the only thing that’s fun about it is that we can show Bob that we wanted to do this, that we’ve always wanted to do this.” Ross added: “I’m going to try and keep this as festive as possible. Everyone should have a friend like Bob Saget; tonight is a tribute, but it’s also a celebration that we all got to know that man, that he has this influence on got our lives. You didn’t really know Bob until you saw him host a Scleroderma Research dinner – that was the real Bob Saget. He was emotional, he was the most sincere I’ve ever seen him on stage except when he was playing on Broadway or something.”
Saget’s wife Kelly Rizzo also co-chaired for the evening, with his children and extended family in the crowd alongside SRF board members Regina Hall and executive chef Susan Feniger, Norman Lear, Joel McHale, Kevin Nealon, Seth Green and Howie Mandel. Saget’s Full room castmates John Stamos, Lori Loughlin and Jodie Sweetin were also in attendance.
Feniger provided the ‘Hot Cuisine’ portion of the evening, which turned into an auction that raised more than $1 million for the foundation (including two of Mayer’s personal guitars). Stamos took the stage to introduce a tribute video for Saget, following a series of jokes that told the audience: “I’ve talked about him so much, written so much about him, and I just love him so much that I’d give anything for it.” he give back.”
A common theme throughout the event was also Saget’s filthy sense of humor, with McHale declaring “Bob was the most empathetic and nastiest person in the world… There was no successful filthy person more loved”, sharing some of the R -rated text messages Saget had sent him over the years.
For the comedy portion of the evening, Nealon and Mandel played short sets for a special guest appearance by Chappelle, another old friend of Saget’s. Chappelle – who took the stage after all the audience’s phones were cut off – admitted: “Tonight I got drunk because I love Bob so much. Bob, I can feel you in this room tonight.’
After reviewing his current stand-up material — including documenting his assault onstage at the Hollywood Bowl in May — Chappelle convinced Burr to join him onstage as the two played each other’s pranks. Chappelle had a drink on stage in Saget’s honor and played a video message to the audience that he had sent Chappelle several months before his death, in which Saget expressed his love and appreciation for his friend.
“What a wonderful human being,” Chappelle said, also noting how Saget had called the benefit of scleroderma to him over the years, and when Chappelle finally came a year, Saget wept. The comedian said he would now forever be doing Saget favors, and although he had joked during his set about how he felt he was bombing, he noted that it was an honor to be there.
Mayer closed the evening with an emotional and story-packed performance, noting that nine months after Saget’s death, it’s still impossible to understand that the star has truly gone because his memories of him are so clear. Mayer revealed that he played the guitar Saget had played at his last show in Florida – Rizzo tracked it down and bought it, then donated it to Mayer in what he said was one of his most prized possessions. He then played, as he put it, “Bob’s favorite songs.”