23 Apr Al Pacino Headlines JFS Event And Helps Raise Record $842,000
Jewish Family Service has one of the best track records in town for bringing in a super star line up to help raise money and give back to the community. Last year, the non-profit brought in Magic Jonhson and the year before that it was Archie Manning. And this year, JFS welcomed the Oscar Winning actor, Al Pacino, for a-90 minute interview and performance. The event, held April 13 at the Hyatt Regency at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, raised a record $842,000. More than 1,200 people came out for the event.
Al Pacino, who started making waves in the 1970’s with forever classics like Godfather, Dog Day Afternoon, Dick Tracy and Scent of a Women, was raised in the South Bronx in New York City. During the event, film expert and moderator, Ron Bostwick (the morning show host at the Colorado Sound) asked Pacino a series of questions, starting with his childhood, which is where the seeds of his acting career started to bloom.
Pacino says he grew up without a TV. “Now I am really starting to date myself,” he joked. But even without an antenna at home, he often made his way to movies with his mother. He says afterwards he would go home and mimic the actors for entertainment. Then, in 8th grade, he had a drama teacher who helped carve a clear path for him.
Pacino says she sat down with his grandmother (whom he lived with) to tell her how much talent she saw in Pacino and that he should pursue acting. “How about that?” Pacino told the audience who answered with an applause. “Because I came from the streets. And when I won the Oscar, I thanked her.”
Throughout the conversation, clips of different movies in which Pacino played a starring role entertained the audience, including Panic in Needle Park, the film that Pacino made his debut as a heroin addict. “They paid me nothing.” But then came Godfather Pacino told us which was met with a massive applause from the audience.
Pacino also talked about why studying and learning Shakespeare is crucial to his acting career. “When you do Shakespeare you get to know Shakespeare. There’s so much there and it gets inside of you. It’s good for you. It’s good healthy stuff.”
Right now, Pacino lives in L.A. to be close to his youngest kids. “When you are old you acclimate to everything.” But as much as Pacino jokes about going with the flow as he gets older, he is still staying relevant in the film industry. In his next film, I Heard You Paint Houses (release date has yet to be announced) Pacino will star alongside Martin Scorsese, Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci to tell the story of mobster, Frank Sheeran.
More About JFS: JFS, which was founded in 1872, is a non-profit serving Denver and Boulder community through a variety of programs. JFS aids seniors in living independently at home, and provides mental health counseling, training and job placement to those with developmental disabilities, as well as providing food and financial aid to people in need. Each year, nearly 25,000 individuals benefit from JFS programs.