Pioneer of the Year dinner honoring Tom Cruise raises $1.6 million

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The 2018 “Pioneer of the Year” dinner honoring Tom Cruise raised a CinemaCon record $1.6 million to benefit the Pioneers Assistance Fund. The event was held April 25 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas during the National Association of Theatre Owners’ annual convention, CinemaCon. 

Cruise was honored before an audience of 2,500 motion picture executives consisting of film studio chiefs, theatrical distribution heads, and exhibition presidents and CEOs. Comedian and actor James Corden emceed an evening that included a special performance by Tony Award-winning Hamilton star Leslie Odom, Jr. Additional appearances were made by actors Angela BassettHenry Cavill and Simon Pegg and Paramount chairman and chief executive officer Jim Gianopulos. Mission: Impossible—Fallout director Christopher McQuarrie presented the award to Cruise, the first actor to receive this annual honor.

The moneys raised provide financial assistance to individuals in the motion picture distribution and exhibition community who are encountering an illness, injury, or a life-changing event.