The SAG-AFTRA Foundation has finalized the honorees program for its fourth annual Patron of the Artists Awards and it’s poised to be an A-list evening.
Jennifer Aniston and Greg Berlanti will take the stage and accept awards at the event, scheduled for Nov. 7 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. The news comes a week after the organization announced it would be honoring Ava DuVernay and Mark Ruffalo.
Like Ruffalo, Aniston will receive an Artists Inspiration Award and per the organization, she’s been chosen for “using her creative and professional success as a performing artist to advance philanthropic and humanitarian causes.” Writer, director and producer and all-around TV mogul Berlanti has been plucked to receive a Patron of the Artists Award, like DuVernay, “for creating significant professional opportunities for performing artists to work and thrive.” The show benefits the SAG-AFTRA Foundation and is not televised.
In announcing the news, SAG-AFTRA Foundation board president JoBeth Williams called it an honor to shine a spotlight on Aniston and Berlanti. “Her celebrated iconic roles in television and film are beloved by audiences all over the world, but it is her philanthropy and genuine empathy for people in need that we will honor on November 7. From her tireless work as a spokesperson for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to her advocacy work for cancer research, Jennifer sets a sterling example for all artists to use their influence to give back to others,” Williams said. “Greg has discovered, nurtured and propelled creative talent in front of the camera and below the line. With an astounding 18 scripted series to his credit, Greg’s ensemble-based shows have launched the careers of countless actors. His creative contributions to the industry not only create new narrative universes, but they are responsible for generating hundreds, if not thousands, of jobs in Hollywood. We look forward to honoring both of these dedicated artists and leaders.”
For Aniston, the news comes as she’s prepping for the big debut of her return to television opposite Reese Witherspoon and Steve Carell on the anticipated APPLE TV + series The Morning Show, which she executive produced. She most recently starred opposite Adam Sandler in Netflix comedy Murder Mystery.
A passionate humanitarian, Aniston has donated millions of dollars for natural disaster relief to organizations such as The Ricky Martin Foundation and the American Red Cross. She also has been an avid supporter and advocate of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Aniston was a recipient of The GLAAD Vanguard Award in 2007 for her outstanding contributions to increase understanding and awareness of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Additionally, Aniston has supported many nonprofits that advocate for education and animal protection.
Currently, Berlanti’s Warner Bros.-based company has a record-breaking 18 scripted series across six different networks, the highest number of shows to air at one time for a TV producer and creator. His credits include Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, Blindspot, Riverdale, You and the gay romantic comedy Love, Simon, which he directed.
The Patron of the Artists Awards is an annual fundraiser that benefits its vital emergency assistance and free educational programs for SAG-AFTRA artists, as well as its Emmy-nominated children’s literacy program Storyline Online that features actors who read to over 10 million children worldwide every month. Sponsors include Focus Features, Amazon Studios, United Airlines, SAG-AFTRA, Variety and Los Angeles magazine. More information about the Patron of the Artists Awards can be found here.