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August 29 2014

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24-Hour Party People

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The ninth annual 24-Hour Plays was running late last night, but at the 25th hour, all was forgiven. As its name suggests, the star-studded casts had only 24 hours to meet with writers and directors to draft scripts and madly rehearse before hitting the stage with six ten-minute plays. So what’s 60 minutes more among famous friends?

Emmy Rossum confessed before the clock started that she had been a bit nervous, but gamely added, “I think the not knowing is the really exciting part.” To a packed house that included P. Diddy and Cassie, the cast didn’t disappoint. Demi Moore played against type as a nerdy, glasses-wearing sister. (The new Ingrid Bergman pen from Montblanc, the evening’s sponsor, had a cameo role as a prop.) Sam Rockwell played a convincing five-year-old and Naomi Watts his mom. And who knew Brooke Shields could carry such a wicked German dominatrix accent while doling out raunchy advice to Jennifer Aniston?

At the after-party, Eva Mendes was relieved it was over but loved the rush: “It was my first time onstage and now I think I’m addicted!” In the roped-off section, naturally, Demi and Ashton (a fellow 24-hour performer) chatted with friends, while Watts and Rockwell were in a more raucous mood—the duo jumped on the banquettes to dance. There was good reason to celebrate: The evening raised $350,000 for the Urban Arts Partnership to fund arts programs in NYC schools.

Photo: EUGENE MIM/PatrickMcMullan.com

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