Stars hail Mandela
May 13, 2005 -- The cream of the New York and Hollywood elite came together in lower Manhattan last night in a star-studded event honoring Nelson Mandela.
Among the luminaries gathered to fete the former South African president at the Tribeca Grill were actors Sean Penn, Hugh Jackman, John Travolta, Richard Gere and Matt Damon, along with one of the evening's hosts, Robert De Niro.
Co-host and hotel tycoon Jerry Inzerillo thanked Mandela for "spreading your humanity and message of hope throughout the world."
The frail 87-year-old Nobel Peace Prize laureate, who first visited the restaurant during a trip to New York in 1990, hammed it up with heavyweight legend Muhammad Ali, who pretended to box with him.
Ali also mugged it up with actor Leonardo DiCaprio and CBS head Les Moonves, and even performed a magic trick for "Saturday Night Fever" star Travolta.
Others in attendance included billionaire Donald Trump, musicians Dave Matthews, Jon Bon Jovi and Quincy Jones, supermodel Naomi Campbell, hip-hop master Sean "P. Diddy" Combs, and directors Martin Scorsese and Spike Lee.
Actresses Glenn Close, Kelly Preston and Carey Lowell and Vanity Fair honcho Graydon Carter also turned out to pay homage to the legendary apartheid opponent.