In rant at the Four Seasons, Peter Fonda proves that he’s mad as hell about something
Hollywood is fraught with uncertainty, but one thing we can all count on is that somewhere in Tinseltown, a Fonda has an opinion on politics. On Sunday, Peter Fonda, the 70-year-old star of Easy Rider, showed he’s still as passionate about protecting the world’s oceans as he was in his radical Greenpeace days. The actor was on hand at the Four Seasons to accept the Legacy Leadership Award from charity group Best Buddies. When we asked what moment stands out from his work with charities, this was his response:
“I went down to New Orleans, and I was down there saying, ‘You’re a fucking prick! You can’t come on this sand and tell me where to go! I’m an American citizen, goddammit!’ I wrote a letter to our president. I said, ‘You’ve committed treason! You’ve allowed foreign troops on our soil, telling our military people, our coast guard, what to do.’ We kicked the Brits out already twice. What’s this all about? What is it now? One if by land, two if by sea, three if by oil slick? I was so pissed off.”
Fonda was more on topic following the gala dinner, which offered a choice of beef tenderloin or miso-glazed Alaskan black cod. “We all need a hug sometimes,” he said while discussing the Best Buddies cause, moving the guests—and himself—to tears. The organization pairs high school, college and university students with people with intellectual disabilities. The iconic actor was chosen for his long legacy of charity work, especially with the autistic. Those seated in the hotel’s Regency Ballroom included George Smitherman, Dragons’ Den judge Kevin O’Leary, Chantal Kreviazuk, Little Mosque on the Prairie star Zaib Shaikh, Maple Leafs and Raptors owner Larry Tanenbaum, Tie Domi, and new National Post CEO Paul Godfrey.
Before the dinner, Daniel Greenglass, who co-chairs the charity with Shore Publishing president Penny Shore, spoke about the changes he’d seen Best Buddies make in people’s lives. “It’s not only about the buddies and the volunteers. It’s also about the family,” he says. “A lot of the time, the buddies are really isolated with their families. And so the parents think their son or daughter will never have a friend; someone will never call them to go bowling or go for coffee, and all of a sudden, with Best Buddies, we do. We introduce that into the family, and it changes the family dynamic.”
The evening raised an astonishing $850,000 for the charity. Rage on, Mr. Fonda.
= Find this story on our Celebrity Sightings Map, where we plot the locations of stars spotted throughout Toronto