Banter and big bucks at Jane Fonda’s annual G-CAPP Fundraiser

A walk-on role in Jane Fonda's Netflix series was auctioned at the 2014 G-CAPP beneft.
A walk-on role in Jane Fonda’s Netflix series was auctioned at the 2014 G-CAPP beneft.

Richard Eldredge

G-CAPP founder Jane Fonda had some advice for the folks flinging their paddles as they bid on a walk-on role in her upcoming Netflix original series Grace and Frankie. “You’ll have to work with me on this,” Fonda told bidders at the benefit auction held at the High Museum of Art last Thursday. “We’ll have to arrange it for a day this fall when we need extras because a lot of the scenes are just me and Lily Tomlin discussing lubricants.” (For more on the show, see my interview with Fonda from earlier in the week.)

Welcome to the Empower Party, Fonda’s annual Atlanta fundraiser for the Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Power & Potential (G-CAPP). The walk-on part, incidentally, went for $26,000. A dinner for 12 (with Fonda as one of the guests) raised $16,000: “At a private dinner where martinis are served, I’m a lot of fun!” Fonda warned. And, in what has become a yearly battle of high-end vacations, a stay at the oceanfront home of Mindspring founder Charles Brewer (daily housekeeping included!) took in $17,500, beating Ted Turner’s Flying D Ranch (fishing license not included), which went for $16,000.

Sara Blakely, Stephanie Blank, and Jane Fonda
Jane Fonda with honorary event co-chairs Sara Blakely and Stephanie Blank

Richard Eldredge

Fonda thanked her honorary co-chairs and longtime G-CAPP supporters, Spanx founder Sara Blakely, and child advocate (and ex of Arthur) Stephanie Blank, who is currently serving on Georgia first lady Sandra Deal’s Children’s Cabinet. Blakely praised both Fonda’s work in Georgia and her figure, as Fonda playfully mouthed behind her, “Thanks to Spanx!”

The evening also served as the North American premiere for Fonda’s new ensemble family dramedy This is Where I Leave You. Fonda’s co-stars Tina Fey and Jason Bateman, in New York doing press for the film which opens Friday, recorded a video message for G-CAPP supporters, concluding with Fey instructing the crowd, “Get out your checkbooks, y’all!”

Fonda’s first scene with Fey in the film created a roar in the theater. Her character, successful child psychologist Hillary Altman, is standing over her just-expired husband’s body and preoccupied with aesthetics. Forcibly removing her dead hubby’s ventilation tube and winging it across the hospital room, she asks, “There, that looks better, don’t you think?”