Remembering TV Stars We Lost this Year
I enjoy watching the Emmys and when it comes to the traditional “In Memoriam” segment each year, I am reminded of how time moves on without some of the famous.
Last year we lost Davy Jones, Richard Dawson, Sherman Hemsley, Phyllis Diller, Michael Clarke Duncan, James Farentino, Don Cornelius, and more. How many of these people did you really remember? If you don’t remember their real names, I’m sure you’d remember them if you saw their pictures.
The reason I ask is this year, the Emmys are planning an extra special tribute for a handful of stars who left us this year.
Special segments are planned to honor James Gandolfini (Sopranos), Gary David Goldberg, Cory Monteith, Jean Stapleton, and Jonathan Winters. This handful of stars ranged in age from 31 to 90.
There’s been some discussion about whether or not Cory Monteith deserves a special segment because of the way he died. In my opinion, people need to remember that we aren’t honoring how people died but how they lived and what they contributed to life while they were here.Â My concern is by choosing a handful, we are making others who died seem less significant in a way.
Executive producer Ken Ehrlich says, “These five individuals brought us such great entertainment and joy, so having their close friends share personal remembrances is something that will be very meaningful for television audiences across the country and across the generations.”
I always find this part of the show a bit emotional and melancholy, but this year we can expect to have it to really pull our heart strings as those who knew the deceased share their memories. Jane Lynch will present the tribute for Cory Monteith of Glee.
Jean Stapleton, who played Edith Bunker on “All in the Family,” will be remembered by Rob Reiner who played her TV family son-in-law. Reiner called her a brilliant comedienne with exquisite timing.
Robin Williams will remember his friend and mentor Jonathan Winters who co-starred with him on “Mork and Mindy.” And Michael J. Fox will be the one to pay tribute to “Family Ties” creator Gary David Goldberg, who died of cancer in June.
The 65th Primetime Emmy Awards airs live from the Nokia Theatre on Sept. 22 at 8:00 p.m. on CBS.