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Embattled Ukraine has tapped Hollywood film critic Leonard Matlin to help fundraise for medical assistance to aid the country’s military effort against an invading Russia.
Matlin is getting behind a Nov. 20 charity event in Hollywood, UkraineFilmFest, which has his daughter, Jessie Maltin, as a co-organizer. The fundraiser at NeueHouse Hollywood aims to draw film community donations through the UNITED24 fundraising platform launched by Ukraine president Volodymyr Zelensky.
The charity event is also organized by the EnoughTea Foundation and will screen short films that include Oleksandr Kiriyenko’s On One’s Own Territory, Olesya Sanin’s Anna, Doors by Natalia Davydenko and The Smell of the Field, from director Andriana Yarmonova.
“Our lives are all about the celebration of art, and we’re incredibly lucky to do what we do. Being able to work with EnoughTea Foundation, UNITED24 and the Ministry of Digital Transformation, bringing awareness to absolutely vital causes while also lifting up Ukrainian filmmakers, is an honor and a thrill,” Jessie Maltin said in a statement.
Separate film screenings and charity events are planned for Nov. 26 in London at Picturehouse Central, and in Kyiv, Ukraine where local representatives from the film industry, first responders and others will watch a live video feed from the London event.
“We strive to raise the general mood and fighting spirit here in the capital because after nine months of full-scale war, things can be tough. We hope that donations and words of support from representatives of the film industry will help us to that end,” EnoughTea Foundation director Anzhelika Hrokholska added.
The UkraineFilmFest event is part of an effort by Ukrainian leader Zelensky to enlist the help of Hollywood celebrities to aid his country’s war effort. Earlier, Mark Hamill was named an ambassador of the UNITED24 fundraising platform to raise funds to purchase drones for the Ukrainian military.
The Luke Skywalker actor joined previously announced ambassadors including Liev Schreiber, Barbra Streisand, the band Imagine Dragons and the athletes Andriy Shevchenko and Elina Svitolina.
The UNITED24 program has so far raised over $200 million dollars from international supporters, according to the Ukrainian government.
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