Major fortunes have emerged from the entertainment and media industry in recent decades, and many top figures in this sector are engaged in philanthropy. Some have established professional grantmaking foundations with clear guidelines and application processes, but many have not, and connecting with these people can be difficult.
Like all our guides, this one is constantly evolving and expanding as we add new profiles and update existing information. So if you have news or a tip, please share it with us. Also, make sure to visit IP's Glitzy Giving blog to see the latest news and developments that we're writing about.
The director/producer and his wife Katie McGrath have an active foundation that addresses education, policy, human services, the arts, and more.
Alda's foundation focuses on early childhood, youth development, violence prevention, and microenterprise organizations that serve the needs of women and families. Alda also has an interest in making science more accessible to the general public.
The author's foundation primarily supports nonprofits in California and Chile that back reproductive rights, and provide vulnerable women and children with access to reproductive care, healthcare, education and protection from violence.
Music legend Alpert has been a major supporter of music education for the past two decades through the Herb Alpert Foundation, but has also supported other causes in the arts and human services.
Michael Angelakis and his wife Christine move their philanthropy through the Angelakis Family Foundation, which lacks transparency. The couple also support their mutual alma mater Babson College. Other interests include the arts, and health.
Edmund Ansin moves his philanthropy through the Ansin Foundation, which awards around $2.9 million in a recent year. Southern Florida serves as an important region of giving.
Funding areas include health and human services, education and youth, individual rights and emergency services, arts and culture, environment, and gun violence.
Minoru Arakawa, his wife Yono, and family move their philanthropy through the Arakawa Foundation, which launched in 2016. Modest grantmaking as only focused on backing a prospective performing arts center in Washington State.
The bestselling author has long focused his philanthropy on supporting family and adult literacy across the country.
A steady giver with a foundation, Baldwin has a number of interests, including environmental causes, education, youth, health and more.
Barker's main focus is funding low-cost spay/neuter clinics and voucher programs to relieve animal overpopulation, but he also gives toward other animal-related work.
The longtime music executive and his wife support Jewish causes and the Los Angeles community.
Bing doesn't have a foundation and is best known for his past political giving. But he's given millions for environmental causes and human services over the years.
The longstanding foundation of the crooner focuses on at-risk women and children, including support to prevent domestic violence.
While Bono is a leading voice for the world’s poor, particularly those in Africa, and donates a lot of time to philanthropic causes, it’s difficult to track his own personal giving.
The entertainment and media force and his wife fund education and youth, health and the L.A. community, among emerging interests.
Brodsky, a founder of Comcast Corp., and family support arts and culture, Jewish causes, education and youth, and environment.
If Bruckheimer is giving, he’s doing so quietly. He’s hosted fundraisers and produced public service announcements for several organizations, but he hasn't yet turned to large-scale giving.
Talent manager Don Buchwald and his wife support his alma mater Brooklyn College. Much of their giving focuses on the arts, particularly theater and performing arts.
Buffett's charitable vehicle, Singing for Change, primarily funds projects that serve children and families, the environment and disenfranchised groups.
Funding interests of the top television executive and his wife include education and youth, environment, arts and culture, health and human services.
Cameron is passionate about the environment and exploration, and is just starting to build a foundation to support environmental causes in particular.
The TV producer has a foundation and a record of giving toward public policy issues and the media.
Cayre made his money in music publishing and computer games. The bulk of the couple’s philanthropy goes to Jewish causes, with some giving to health and policy organizations.
While the movie star is best known for his work on Darfur, he's also been involved in other humanitarian and anti-poverty efforts.
The music and fashion artist-businessman is a strong supporter of education and youth in his philanthropy.
The telecommunications business leader funds education, arts and culture, human services, environment and animals, and health.
Couric's charitable work has been shaped by family tragedy, which led her to co-found the National Colorectal Cancer Research Alliance in honor of her late husband.
The music producer and songwriter prioritizes higher education, particularly university music and music industry programs. He's given to other causes, as well.
Curtis and husband Guest support education, the arts, health, environmental and Los Angeles community causes.
The record producer has given to NYU for a music institute that bears his name. But health, particularly cancer research, is another interest.
The retired Hollywood actor is a pioneering activist for animal rights. Her foundation sends support nationwide in the form of modest grants.
Diaz moves her philanthropy through Begin Today For Tomorrow, a philanthropic vehicle that supports several causes. She funds health, global and environmental issues.
The movie star has a singular focus on the environment, and has been donating to environmental causes through the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation for more than 15 years.
Diller and his wife, fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg, are active philanthropists who have given away tens of millions of dollars to a wide variety of charitable causes through their family foundation.
The cable television industry billionaire's funding interests include health (pancreatic research), human services, education and youth, arts and culture, and religion.
Dooley is a longtime Viacom executive. The family’s giving focuses on health and human services, and education and youth.
The screen legend and his wife have an active foundation that supports various health projects, funds human services outfits and more.
The recording artist, record label mogul and audio electronics executive, Dr. Dre (and business partner Jimmy Iovine), donated $70 million to the University of Southern California, among other giving.
The former Disney chief has a robust foundation focusing primarily on the underserved children and elderly of Los Angeles County, but he's given to many other issues, as well.
The rap musician-songwriter-producer funds education and youth, human services and health, and Detroit community causes.
The founder of EchoStar and DISH Network, and his wife, fund education and youth, health and human services, religious, and global causes.
The singer's philanthropy focuses on Miami, health, human services, youth, and animal care.
Funding areas include higher education, performing arts, and conservation, including that of the endangered Asian elephant. Feld Entertainment has operated Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, Disney on Ice, and other shows.
The billionaire Fertitta brothers made their money through UFC fight promotion. Giving interests include education and youth, health, human services, arts and culture, and veterans. Las Vegas is a focus.
The Fields' giving focuses on arts and culture, education and youth, environment, and global development. Philadelphia is an important region for their philanthropy.
The cable television executive and his wife are longtime supporters of environmental and animal causes, as well as education and youth, health and human services, and arts and culture.
Fonda's interests include youth and education, adolescent reproductive health, human services, and the arts.
In 2000, Fox established the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, which has become the largest and most recognizable funder for such research and treatments.
The actor's philanthropy focuses on Mississippi, where he resides, and grantmaking mainly involves support of education and the arts.
The veteran television executive and his family have supported policy and global causes, education and youth, among other causes. Freston has worked abroad and is on the board of ONE Campaign.
The couple fund projects and organizations that address arts and culture, and education and youth.
The Garfield Foundation supports environmental sustainability, collaborative networks, and the advance of systems change practices. Garfield has written dozens of books, including several that became the basis for Hollywood action movies.
Geffen is a major donor for LGBTQ and HIV/AIDS causes. His foundation has given extensively to the Los Angeles area, which prioritizes UCLA theater.
George's foundation makes artistic grants to unpublished fiction writers, poets, emerging playwrights and to organizations benefiting disadvantaged youth.
The actor's activism and giving have been mainly focused on Tibet, with a few exceptions, including homelessness.
Alan Gerry and his wife Sandra move their philanthropy through the Gerry Foundation, which lacks transparency, but gave around $5.1 million in a recent year. The couple's giving centers on revitalizing Sullivan County in upstate New York.
Gifford's philanthropy focuses on religious causes and institutions, children, health and more.
The Motown Records founder supports education and youth, arts and culture, health and human services.
The longtime Walt Disney Co. executive and his wife are staunch supporters of music and music education and have given heavily to alma mater DePauw University.
The bestselling author gives mainly to causes in Mississippi and Virginia, but he's also given to national justice groups and global causes.
Kevin Hart founded Help from the Hart Charity to help youth gain access to educational opportunities. He has supported UNCF and KIPP to help students attend HBCUs.
The TV and radio host and his wife fund work in children and youth, human services.
Cable and communications executive Hauser and his wife have shown funding interest in foreign affairs, education, arts and culture, and community causes.
The world's most famous professional skateboarder established a foundation to create public skateparks, particularly in low-income communities, and to support youth.
The grandson of media baron William Randolph Hearst and his wife have supported arts and culture, health, education and youth, and global causes.
The late publisher of Playboy magazine was a philanthropist for decades; his foundation funded projects related to "First Amendment rights and rational sex and drug policies."
Katherine Heigl, and her mother, founded the Jason Debus Heigl Foundation, which aims to "eliminate the needless suffering inflicted on animals by human cruelty, indifference and ignorance."
The studio exec is best known for his environmental giving, but he backs education, the arts and other causes, too.
The cable TV billionaire funds arts, climate and clean energy, education, and global causes.
The director and his wife Cheryl have a foundation, making modest grants that reflect a variety of interests, including the environment, global development and film.
Hughes, the first African-American woman to chair a publicly held company, founded the Radio One media giant and leads it with her son Liggins. Their philanthropy includes gifts to education, and arts and culture.
The Disney chief and his wife Willow Bay have a foundation that supports education, youth, and other areas. Health is another interest.
The actor and his wife Deborra-Lee have a family foundation, which funds children's welfare, including adoption, the arts and global humanitarian concerns.
Top actor and film producer supports causes in health, education and youth, and African American arts and culture.
The actor, who starred in The King of Queens television comedy series, and his family are interested in healthcare, religious, and human services causes.
Funding areas by the literary agent power couple include arts and culture, education and youth, health, and human services. The Janklows are top collectors of contemporary art.
Elton John gives primarily through the Elton John AIDS Foundation, but he’s still found time to raise money for other causes.
Johnson supports arts, education and youth. She's given particularly large sums to higher education, and some of this work supports arts education.
Jolie and her ex, Brad Pitt, have donated around $30 million through their foundation, which funds health, education, conservation and sustainable development efforts.
The mega-successful music producer and film/TV composer has a long history of support for humanitarian and youth causes, and arts education.
The rock star's philanthropy focuses on housing and poverty issues in his home state of New Jersey.
Tartikoff Karatz devotes much of her time and energy to raising funds for cancer research.
Katzenberg’s giving is extremely well rounded, though he's been especially interested in health-related issues, particularly AIDS, and organizations that work on behalf of children.
The film financier/producer and founder of Relativity Media gives to causes in children and education, animals, medical research, and Jewish causes.
The Ethiopian-born supermodel and her foundations are active in maternity health and global development, with a particular interest in Africa.
James Kennedy and his wife Sarah have made large personal contribution in health, conservation, and education. The James M. Fox Foundation also focuses on these causes. The Southeast and intermountain west serve as important regions of giving.
The film producer is best known for his major giving toward cancer research, but he has also given heavily to the arts and education.
The horror writer's philanthropy focuses on the state of Maine, giving to libraries, higher education, and health.
The cable television businessman funds education and youth, environment, arts and culture, and health causes.
Beyoncé's philanthropic efforts focus on girls and women, as well as poverty and other causes.
This bestselling author tends to keep his philanthropy close to home in Orange County, California. He supports charities that serve critically ill children and people with severe disabilities.
The celebrity chef and restaurateur, and his wife Alden, focus their philanthropy on children's education, wellness and arts.
Both Lane and Comley are Tony Award-winning theater producers and champions of theater. They’re steady patrons of the arts and culture, and education and youth. Major gifts have gone to Boston University, UMass Lowell, and Emerson College.
Lear and his wife Lyn give to a range of causes, with interests in civil liberties, education, arts, media, and more.
The Leeds family has supported education and youth, and health causes. A major gift went to Leeds’ alma mater, University of Colorado.
Letterman's philanthropic interests include education, global development and humanitarian efforts, and local causes, mainly in Indiana and Montana.
Leno and his wife Mavis invest in education, women's rights, animals and more. However, public grantmaking has been so far modest.
George Lindemann, his wife Frayda, and family move their philanthropy through the Lindemann Charitable Foundation II., which gave away $1.3 million in a recent year. The family strongly support the arts, especially the opera. Other interests include education and health. The foundation tends to prioritize Florida.
The actor's foundation concentrates on education and entrepreneurship for Latinas, and children's health. Longoria favors causes in Texas, Mexico, and other regions.
The Lopez Family Foundation supports increasing the women and children’s access to quality health care and health education.
Funding areas include education and youth, health and human services, global causes. The television producer has funded scholarships at Los Angeles area schools.
Lucas is a major longtime supporter of education, though lately, he’s been focused on building the Lucas Cultural Arts Museum.
Lumpkin, a telecommunications executive, supports environmental causes, health, education, and the arts. His giving has a strong regional focus on East Central Illinois.
Lynch's giving is laser-focused on transcendental meditation, which he believes is a powerful tool that can transform education, positively impact people's lives, and ultimately lead to world peace.
Lynton and his wife Jamie mainly fund schools in the Northeast, but they have given for human services, health, and other causes.
The producer of television's Family Guy and other series has begun to develop his philanthropy with support for journalism and media integrity, notably a $2 million donation to NPR and $500,000 gift to Los Angeles-area member station KPCC.
Madonna's Ray of Light Foundation supports organizations around the world working to promote peace, equal rights and education for all.
Funding interests from the Liberty Media executive and his family include education and youth, health, and the Denver community.
Important sites of giving are Los Angeles and Denver. Causes include human services and health, education and youth, arts and culture, environment, and global needs.
The media mogul gives mainly to higher education, programs for gifted K–12 students and conservation.
Through his charitable foundation, Martin mainly gives for arts and culture, but also supports the environment and health.
Gilbert, a longtime Hearst Corporation executive, and his family focus their philanthropy on the arts, including poetry, music, and theater.
The giving of the Clear Channel co-founder is quite diverse, mostly concentrated in Texas.
McCartney is known primarily for his support of animal rights and environmental organizations, though he’s also championed a number of humanitarian causes, and supports charities that fight cancer.
The Clear Channel co-founder and his wife focus their giving in Texas. They give major amounts to higher ed, but also to arts and culture, and human services and health.
The actor's foundation focuses on youth well-being and fitness. It also funds health causes.
Luigi Caiola and his husband Sean McGill move their philanthropy through the recently-minted McGill Caiola Charitable Foundation. The couple focus much of their giving on the arts.
The wrestling promoter and his wife Linda provide support for youth and women, focusing mainly in Connecticut; they also fund human services outfits and health.
The veteran Time magazine writer and editor and his wife, a musician, fund arts and culture, education and youth, human services, and community causes. They’ve also funded women’s causes and organizations related to journalism.
The longtime Warner Bros. Entertainment executive and his wife fund causes in education, children's and civil rights, arts and culture, health and human services, humanitarian, and Jewish causes. Los Angeles is a region of giving.
This successful television producer has interests in education, health and more. He and his wife Alice primarily fund causes in New York City and the greater Northeast.
Midler gives to the environment and civic space, arts and culture, health, education, human services and humanitarian causes.
The film producer's philanthropy does not go through a formal family foundation and so is hard to track fully, but funding has gone to his native Israel and to the arts. He is an avid art collector and a former soccer star.
The celebrated writer of the Broadway musical Hamilton, and his wife, support humanitarian and Latino causes.
The Moss family focuses philanthropy on health, medical research, and arts and culture. Grantees include Mount Sinai, American Film Institute, and American Friends of the Toronto International Film Festival.
The former music mogul gives away a million or more every year through the Moss Foundation, spreading his money out pretty evenly among a number of causes, including health, education and the environment.
Murdoch launched the Quadrivium Foundation with his wife Kathryn in 2013, endowing it with nearly $10 million in assets. They've set their sights on a variety of causes, most notably the environment.
Media mogul Murdoch has long been criticized for his lack of philanthropy, but his massive fortune has to go somewhere eventually.
Gabe Newell does not appear to have a formal charitable vehicle. He funds and co-founded an educational company called Foundry10, which explores non-traditional learning.
The media mogul oversees a foundation engaged in substantial giving, with a range of interests that include higher ed, the arts, health, and human services.
N. J. Nicholas Jr. and his family move their philanthropy through the Nicholas Family Charitable Trust, which awarded under $250,000 in a recent year.
Funding interests have addressed education and youth, health, veterans and soldiers, religious, human services and humanitarian causes.
The former Warner Bros. Records executive has a foundation that's given to various causes over the years, predominately to UCLA, the arts, and more.
The family's philanthropy focuses on New York City and the Northeast, with an emphasis on education and the arts.
Novelist James B. Patterson's philanthropy focuses on youth reading and literacy, supporting libraries, reading programs and bookstores.
Isaac Perlmutter and his wife Laura move their philanthropy through the Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Foundation, which gave away around $1.4 million in a recent year and lacks transparency. The Perlmutters prioritize health causes and have given tens of millions to NYU Medical Center. They also support the Jewish community.
Perry's foundation aims to transform "tragedy into triumph by empowering economically disadvantaged youth, seniors, and families to overcome adversity by achieving a better quality of life."
Brad Pitt took the lead creating an organization to rebuild New Orleans and has been outspoken on marriage equality.
The founder of MTV and his wife give steadily through a family foundation for a number of causes, including poverty and the environment.
The family is active in the New York area Jewish community; Price serves on several key boards. Education and policy are other interests.
Puck is involved in food and hunger groups and supports health and Jewish causes.
Much of Redstone’s giving is directed toward health-related causes. Based on the organizations he backs, he also has a particular interest in helping children.
Reiner uses his Hollywood status to speak out and raise money for issues he cares about. He's been most active in early childhood education, but his interests include a wide array of issues.
The Grey's Anatomy television producer has funded arts, education and cultural inclusion, giving at least $10 million to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.
The singer-songwriter funds veterans causes, and health and human services.
The Comcast CEO and his wife Aileen have given mostly to schools with ties to the family, but have also been involved in medical research efforts.
The bestselling author oversees a grantmaking operation with a focus on literacy. It also supports children's programs, arts organizations, and humanitarian efforts.
The Comcast founder and his wife support dozens of arts and community organizations, mainly in the Philadelphia area.
An Emmy award-winning TV host and reporter, Robinson's philanthropy focuses on girls. Her foundation supports work in STEM education, health, arts, and other topics, particularly for girls of color and underserved girls.
Funding areas for the TV industry couple include education and youth, arts and culture, Jewish causes, and health and human services.
The director-producer of TV and film gives to arts and culture, health and medical research, education, environment and animals, global, women, and progressive causes.
The legendary singer has funded arts and culture causes, and health and human services.
Saban and his wife Cheryl have given millions to Jewish causes, hospitals, and women's empowerment, as well as the Los Angeles community.
Funding interests include arts and culture, Los Angeles community, and youth. Los Angeles is an important site of giving.
Chef and restaurateur Samuelsson directs much of his philanthropy into food, careers in the culinary profession, youth, and global causes. The health and well-being of people in Ethiopia, where he was born, is a focus.
The progressive actress backs outfits working in areas such as women's rights and civil liberties, but has other interests, too.
The film director/producer/screenwriter focuses philanthropy on film preservation and history, as well as education and youth.
The Columbian-born singer/songwriter is strongly focused on universal education for children.
Domestic interests involve education reform in Philadelphia. Globally, efforts focus on livelihood opportunities, education, food and water access, and agricultural projects in Africa, India, and Central America.
Funding areas include education and youth, health, arts and culture. Particular focus recently has been in the Northeast.
Simmons supports efforts to combat slavery and sex trafficking, encourage young people to vote, and fight poverty in New York City. Arts education programming is another top cause.
Simon is a longstanding supporter of children's health issues but has also raised funds for groups such as amfAR, the Nature Conservancy, and Autism Speaks.
Skoggard, a writer and translator, and Holtzman, an artist, focus their giving on human rights, civil rights, human services, and progressive organizations.
Along with his wife Jada, Smith supports education, health and social justice. Climate change is also an interest.
Snowdon, through his foundation, primarily funds arts and LGBT causes. Another interest is human services.
The Vampire Diaries star has a foundation that focuses on the environment and animals.
Spielberg does much philanthropy anonymously, making it hard to track. He has contributed to a wide range of causes, however, most notably Jewish causes and health-related issues.
Through his Thrill Hill Foundation, Springsteen's giving mainly focuses on human services and anti-poverty efforts.
Steel lost her son to mental illness, which is her main cause. But she's also given to homelessness.
The film actor-director-producer is particularly focused on assisting people in Haiti and has supported schools and education there.
Sting backs the Rainforest Foundation and Rainforest Fund, which he and wife Trudie Styler founded in 1989. But the couple has also given to other causes.
The Broadway producer focuses on the arts, particularly theater, and sits on various boards. Grantees and board memberships include Second State Theater, Broadway League, Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, and Casting Society of America.
Streep has been an active philanthropist for decades, with a foundation and interests in arts and culture, education, women, and more.
The AOL Time Warner executive and his wife focus philanthropy on health and human services, the Westchester County community, education and youth, and arts and culture.
Through her foundation, Streisand gives quite a few grants annually in a number of areas, including to progressive organizations.
The film producer and New York Giants chairman gives to education, arts and media, youth, health and human services, and Jewish causes.
Education, arts and culture, health and human services.
Kenny Troutt and his wife Lisa once moved philanthropy through the White Cake Family Foundation, though the current status of the foundation is uncertain . He and Lisa are interested in areas such as health, education, and the arts.
The founder of film production company Legendary Entertainment and his wife fund education, medical and scientific research, health, social services, and other issues.
The co-founder of Orbis Communications and former U.S. Representative steadily supports the arts. Other giving goes to health, including AIDS research.
Turner supports environmental causes, famously giving a $1 billion gift to create the United Nations Foundation, and $250 million to the Nuclear Threat Initiative. Despite big giving, Turner still has plenty of money left.
Journalist Barbara Walters gives toward education and youth, arts and culture, and health.
The actor-director-producer and his family support education and youth, including HBCU institutions, human services, and global causes.
Veteran actor well known for his work in the long-running Law & Order TV series is a supporter of the arts and environmental causes, including protection of fisheries.
Co-founder of Carsey Werner Television and co-owner of the Boston Red Sox. Funding interests include education and youth, health, human services, arts and culture, Jewish causes.
The TV producer former honcho at home video and television company MCA and family support health, education and youth, Jewish causes, and community. Steady support has gone to Princeton University.
Kayne West founded Art of Culture, which provides free access to the arts for youth. He recently gave a $10 million gift to support a James Turrell piece.
The bulk of Winfrey’s giving goes to education, including charter schools, programs that support African-American students, and the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy in South Africa.
The film producer and his wife Margo support education, scientific research, and the arts. Los Angeles is a major site of their philanthropy.
The actress is chiefly interested in autism, but has supported other causes, as well.
Former Chicago Cubs pitcher and his wife have been active funders of children's charities.
Bob Woodruff, an ABC News television journalist, suffered a traumatic brain injury while reporting from Iraq. The Woodruff family started a foundation to help service members, veterans, and their families deal with such injuries, including post-traumatic stress.
The film director and his wife fund arts and culture, education and youth, health and human services, Jewish causes, and global causes.
The media tycoon has given extensively in education and STEM, health, and Jewish causes.