Aired live and commercial-free on Saturday, 15 January 2005 simultaneously on 10 US networks.
Usher Raymond was scheduled to perform and Sean Hayes was scheduled to appear. But both had to drop out for unknown reasons.
Bill O'Reilly sparked a minor controversy when he questioned whether all the money raised by this event would actually go to aid the tsunami victims. George Clooney who helped organize the event took offense to this and sent O'Reilly an angry letter, in which he also invited him to join the event. At first, O'Reilly mocked Clooney's letter on his TV and radio shows. But after being assured that all the funds would go to the American Red Cross, O'Reilly put aside his differences with Clooney and appeared on the telethon.