TIFF partysphere: Kathy Griffin, John Legend, Kim Cattrall, and Kenneth Cole at this year’s amfAR gala

Kim Cattrall, Kenneth Cole, Kathy Griffin, and Cheyenne Jackson.

There were five or so things we loved about the third annual Cinema Against Aids gala, held Sunday night at The Carlu. And one we didn’t. Here goes:

-Hosts Shinan Govani and Ciara Hunt stood outside the doors of College Park, alongside the red carpet, greeting guests as if they were welcoming them into their home. Even better, she wore an ethereal/punk beige/black chiffon gown by Zac Posen, while he was in an immaculate tux.

-Emcee Kathy Griffin slammed onto the stage with four letter words, a stream of sex chatter, and a keenness for lifting her dress to show us the black bikini panties under her black hose. And she mistakenly introduced Govani and Hunt as two ladies. At least she wasn’t boring.

-The sequins and gowns! Slivers of tangy tangerine, sheaves of white paillettes, tomato-red and indigo chiffon, and dazzling abstract prints.

Kim Cattrall turned herself into an auction prize, taking to the stage to throw in her silvery dress, and later her silvery heels, to go along with a meet and greet after a performance of Private Lives. Atta girl!

Kenneth Cole drove home the point of the evening, raising money for aids, with his usual grace and wit. John Legend commanded the baby grand and the room with his velvet vocals. And there was a burst of applause for 30 Rock’s Cheyenne Jackson and physicist Monte Lapka when it was announced they were newlyweds.

-The sour note: an auctioneer who, rather than inspiring guests to empty their wallets for a Scaasi gown worn by Elizabeth Taylor, sniped that if the room were full of New Yorkers, the bidding would skyrocket. Belittling Toronto, and a crowd that has paid thousands to be present, is not the way to charm people into spending even more.

View the photo gallery »