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Gwyneth Paltrow helps launch Stand Up To Cancer

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by Cancer Research UK | News

26 September 2012

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Stars from television, music and film will come together this autumn for “Stand Up To Cancer” – a unique new fundraising campaign on Channel 4.

Joining forces with Cancer Research UK, the campaign will build on air over a week of programming, delivering the best of Channel 4’s science and entertainment programming. It will climax on Friday 19th October in a fundraising extravaganza hosted by Davina McCall, Alan Carr and Dr Christian.

Today in London, Gwyneth Paltrow, Co-Executive Producer of SU2C USA, joined Channel 4’s Chief Creative Officer, Jay Hunt; Cancer Research UK’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr Harpal Kumar; and all round fabulous press conference chair Alan Carr, to launch Stand Up To Cancer UK.

Alan Carr revealed: “Pretty much everyone will be affected by this disease in their lifetime, and that’s the very simple reason why I’m honoured to be involved with this campaign. Like so many people, I’ve seen exactly how destructive the big C is. I’ve lost two people already this year to cancer, and friend of mine who has been diagnosed with throat cancer is having her voice box removed next week, and won’t speak again. So we need to raise a lot of money.”

Gwyneth Paltrow said: “I would like to tell you about nine women from the entertainment industry in the United States who, four years ago, decided to do something about the unbearable reality that cancer claims the lives of eight million men, women and children worldwide every year. In the US, 1600 people-a-day are lost to cancer. I lost my father in 2002, and I’m also aware of the impact this disease has on families. But whether we lose a loved one in the US or the UK, we all lose until we do something to change it.”

“Well, these nine women, whose lives had been profoundly affected by cancer, did something. They mobilised the entertainment community, and created Stand Up to Cancer – a program of Hollywood’s leading charity, the Entertainment Industry Foundation. Stand Up to Cancer is a grassroots movement to raise funds for cancer research, to get new treatments to patients more quickly. It requires scientists to work together, to compete against cancer, instead of each other. “

“Well, it worked. Four years later, $260 million has been pledged. 350 scientists have been funded across more than 80 institutions, with dozens of clinical trials underway. And patients are benefiting. Scientists are working together, accelerating the process to save more lives. And on October 19th, the fight against cancer comes to Channel 4. With their extraordinary commitment to the one-in-three people in the UK who will be diagnosed with cancer in our lifetime, we are thrilled to join forces with Cancer Research UK and Channel 4, and to bring you Stand Up to Cancer UK.”
“We have the power to make cancer powerless – perhaps even end it. But it takes more research, and that requires funding. Cancer has taken some of the best among us, and it is time for us all to stand up and fight back. I’m so proud to be standing up to cancer for my dad. Please tune in and donate on October 19th. Stand for the people you love in your life.  Stand for these amazing advances in science and medicine.  Stand Up to Cancer.”

Jay Hunt said: “Why Stand Up to Cancer, and why Channel 4? Well, Channel 4 prides itself on daring to do things that nobody else would want to do or could do. In the last few weeks we’ve managed to change attitudes in this nation to disability with our coverage of the Paralympics, and now we’re up for the ultimate challenge – and to be honest, it doesn’t get much bigger than trying to play a part in curing cancer.”

“[This will be] a charity appeal unlike anything you’ve seen before: a uniquely Channel 4 hybrid of comedy, of entertainment, and science, which is designed to grab hold of an audience and not let it go.”

“Now we are so determined to do something really special on October 19th, we have taken a rather terrifying decision, and one that my scheduling team may not forgive me for. We’re going to stay on air for as long as the donations keep pouring in. Now that might mean that we’re still sitting there as the sun comes up in the morning, but it’ll take whatever it takes, and I think the cause is so important we wanted to make that sort of commitment.”

Dr Harpal Kumar said: “It’s not just technology or knowledge that we need. It’s funding. And every pound we raise is a step closer to our goal of beating this disease. Through Stand Up to Cancer, we hope to raise millions of pounds for our lifesaving work, and thanks to some very important people in this room with us here today, we’re not doing it alone.”

“I’m absolutely thrilled that Stand Up to Cancer has become a reality in the UK, and Channel 4 is the perfect partner for a campaign that promises to challenge, inspire, and push the boundaries in how we fight this devastating disease.”

“The UK leads the world in clinical trials, with one-in-five patients with cancer going on to a clinical study. But we need to do more. Many more patients would like the option of going on clinical trials.. So all the funds raised through Stand Up to Cancer will go towards research specifically designed to have an impact within just a few years, by working to turn breakthroughs in the lab to breakthroughs in our hospitals.”

Throughout the week and night, there will be a plenty of other surprises and a huge range of opportunities for audiences to get involved and donate to the cause, to show their support and raise millions for the fight against cancer. For inspiration viewers can log on to

In the run up to the 19 October, Cancer Research UK will be urging the public to get involved by donating money, fundraising, showing support through social networks or snapping up some Stand Up To Cancer merchandise.  


For up to date information please go to or

SU2C Social media:
Twitter handle: @Standup2C
Facebook page:

For media enquiries, please contact:
For Channel4 related enquires please contact: Nikki Neate on 020 7306 5377 or [email protected]

For Cancer Research UK please contact: Laura Peters on 020 3469 8367 or [email protected]