Academy tries to soften blow with angry Joan Rivers fans

Many think the late actress, comedian, and host should have appeared on the show's In Memoriam tribute.

BEVERLY HILLS, CA: The group that oversees the Academy Awards is working to swiftly communicate with fans of Joan Rivers and media outlets to say why the late comedian was not included in a memorial on Sunday night’s Oscars broadcast.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is emphasizing that Rivers has been included in the organization’s In Memoriam gallery.

"Joan Rivers is among the many worthy artists and filmmakers we were unfortunately unable to feature in the In Memoriam segment of this year's Oscar show," the Academy told PRWeek via email. "She is, however, included in our In Memoriam gallery on"

The Academy did not give additional details about its comms strategy in response to the backlash.

Many media outlets and fans panned the group for "snubbing" Rivers from the tribute aired during the 2015 edition of the Oscars on Sunday night. She died in September after complications from surgery.

Celebrities such as comedian Billy Eichner and actor Michael Chiklis said on Twitter that they were outraged Rivers wasn’t included.

Rivers began hosting E!'s Oscars red-carpet special in 1995 and appeared in films such as The Muppets Take Manhattan, Spaceballs, and Shrek 2 during her career of more than five decades. She also starred in E!’s Fashion Police  TV series.

In Memoriam is an annual Oscars segment that honors recently deceased members of the Academy. Among those who made the cut this year were Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Maya Angelou, alongside industry stars Mickey Rooney, Robin Williams, and Lauren Bacall.

Other recently deceased celebrities who were not mentioned include Elaine Stritch, Richard Kiel, Gottfried John, Taylor Negron, and George Sluizer.

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