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2012 Oscars – Elton John’s Party Draws Celebs, Raises Millions

Elton John and Paul Stanley
Larry Busacca, Getty Images

We tend to think of awards shows as excuses for famous people to get together in their finest duds and pat themselves on the back — and the same goes for the countless pre- and post-parties that go along with them. But while that may be true most of the time, Elton John‘s Oscar party is different — to the tune of more than $225 million raised for HIV/AIDS research over the last couple of decades.

John’s Oscar party turned 20 in typically stylish fashion last night (Feb. 26), drawing an eclectic crowd of celebrities while raising more funds for prevention and research. Where else could you find Paul Stanley of Kiss and Aerosmith‘s Steven Tyler rubbing shoulders with Gwen Stefani, or Katy Perry carrying on a conversation with Hollywood legend Cloris Leachman? Only Sir Elton packs ‘em in like that.

This year’s bash boasted a guest list of 900 — a full 200 more than last year’s — and John noted his event’s growing success with pride, telling Pop Sugar, “We’re getting bigger and bigger, which means we’re raising more money — and the money gets to people who actually need it.”

Since he started hosting his Oscar party 20 years ago, John’s efforts have helped fund HIV/AIDS prevention and research in more than 55 countries. You can learn more about the Elton John AIDS Foundation at its official site.

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