Star-Studded 'Idol' Raises Awareness


Huge numbers, huge dollars... and one collectively huge heart. "Extra" has the early returns from "Idol Gives Back," and as millions of viewers proved, when it comes to charity, America knows how to open its wallet! Reports say $18 million was raised in the first hour alone, with a projected $100 million final tally.

The show also proved that "Desperate Housewife" Teri Hatcher has some powerful lungs! She brought down the house singing Carrie Underwood's "Before He Cheats."

For the Idols, however, the joy of singing and giving is quickly replaced by the anxiety of facing the ax. Carly Smithson is likely feeling the cold steel of the Idol chopping block after Simon Cowell told her, "You might actually be in a bit of trouble."

"Extra" was behind the scenes with the final eight last night -- and they revealed they all packed a bag last night, just in case! "Because if you get cut, it's like a whirlwind getting out of there," dreadlocked crooner Jason Castro explained. "The next morning you're up at three doing interviews all day, and then you're on a plane." Added David Cook, "Everyone runs their song a couple times, just to make sure we know it in case we have to sing it."

All that pressure begs the question -- did any of the Idols solicit support while answering the charity phones last night? Baby-faced favorite David Archuleta says no. "I just told them thanks for donating," he said.

See who's forced to take their final bow tonight on FOX.

Click on an image to view the IDOL GIVES BACK SHOW photo gallery!