and Rebecca DeMornay at Beastly BallLet’s put our hands, paws, claws, hoofs, fins, flippers and wings together and applaud the Los Angeles Zoo for their 35th Annual Beastly Ball. This event brought out over 1,000 people to raise funds to support exhibits, educational programs and conservation at the Zoo. Guests had the unique opportunity to take an “after hours” stroll through the grounds, viewing the inhabitants in their environments; feedings of red kangaroos, gray seals and even the legendary Komodo Dragon (who once had a taste of Phil Bronstein,) Sharon Stone’s former hubby.

We tasted much better fare, courtesy of such eateries as The Smoke House in Burbank (their garlic bread is outstanding), Glendale’s Crocodile Café, El Cholo, Celestino, and Il Fornaio to name a few. Some of the celebs enjoying the balmy summer evening included Rebecca DeMornay, Jason Alexander, Sean Aston and former Mayor James Hahn and his son Jackson. Naturally, Golden Girl Betty White, who is on the GLAZA Board, added her super star power.

and young Ben Golombeck petting a friendly goat

at the Los Angeles ZooBesides a silent auction, which featured such exotic items as an l0 day expedition to the Galapagos; the live auction was the most unusual ever. One had the opportunity to name the baby Visayan Warty Pig, or to enjoy a Birthday Bash at the Sea Lion cliffs. We particularly loved the elephant wash and painting. Gita, one of the Zoo’s playful pachyderms, will paint you a one of a kind masterpiece which you can take home to commemorate the experience

Don’t’ laugh – Howard Hong of Arcadia paid $26,000 for three paintings by the late chimpanzee, Congo, a former resident of the London Zoo, who painted 400 works during the late 1950’s. Even Picasso owned work by this prodigious primate, hailed as the “Cézanne of the ape world”.

Comedian Jay Mohr (who appeared in Simone with Al Pacino) was master of ceremonies for the event. We are pleased to learn that Pacino will receive the 20th American Cinematheque Award on October 21 at the Beverly Hilton. He will join such former recipients as Eddie Murphy ( who received the first Cinematheque Award in 1986), Steven Spielberg, Sean Connery, Tom Cruise and last year’s honoree Steve Martin.

American Cinematheque Award Oct. 21Pacino’s star has shone brightly through four decades of memorable performances that have defined standards of acting excellence for generations of moviegoers. No doubt many of his former co-stars like Robin Williams, Hillary Swank, Russell Crowe and Cameron Diaz will be on hand to laud the legendary thespian.

The event will be taped for airing on AMC in January 2006. An unforgettable evening on the Hollywood Beat.