Filmmaker Seth MacFarlane is once again donating to the Entertainment Community Fund (ECF), this time to the tune of $5 million. MacFarlane previously donated $1 million in July of this year, for the fund’s efforts of supporting industry professionals amid the Hollywood strikes.
MacFarlane is partnering with the ECF to launch a $10 million initiative in hopes of attracting more donors. He has committed $5 million to this project. The ECF, previously known as the Actors Fund, spreads support beyond actors. It offers programs and services, financial aid and otherwise, to those who work in the entertainment industry.
As of September 19th, the fund has distributed $7.4 million to more than 3,515 film and TV workers. This includes writing assistants, production assistants, key grips, gaffers, lighting and sound designers, script supervisors, hair and makeup professionals, and many others. The emergency financial assistance is used to cover basic living expenses like rent, groceries, health insurance, and other basic necessities.
The fund has received millions in donations from thousands of donors, but that money goes quickly. Some notable donors are Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw, Herb Alpert, Katie McGrath and J. J. Abrams, and Michelle Pfeiffer. Due to the heightened request, the ECF distributes between $400,000 to $500,00 per week. This huge is compared to an average $75,000 per week for the first half of 2023.
It is the understanding of many that MacFarlane heard of the high dollar amount being distributed and felt compelled to donate more. MacFarlane felt inspired by the ECF’s work in helping a wide variety of industry professionals in all job categories. MacFarlane himself is a striking member of both the WGA and SAG-AFTRA, and has been seen on the picket lines.
“There aren’t enough words to express our tremendous gratitude to Seth as he continues to help those in need, all while inspiring others with this call to action to do the same,” Annette Bening said. Bening serves as the ECF’s chair of the board and has donated to the fund herself. “At this rate, we’ll need at least $10 million to continue helping people in the coming weeks. Seth’s gift is an incredible contribution to help us be able to do that, and we hope others join in as well.”
ECF President and CEO Joe Beninasa added: “We are eternally grateful to Seth for this extremely generous donation. We know that there will be long-term ramifications of the work stoppage that will continue to impact people’s lives and well-being for months to come, and this transformative gift will allow us to continue to answer the influx of request for help we get each day.”