One constant during AWARDS SZN (aside from ever-present issues with diversity) are the "In Memoriam" segments. These tributes document the stars who were lost during the year, and at times, it can cause some issues. During Sunday night's Emmys broadcast, there were a number of noticeable absences in their "In Memoriam" tribute, including Frank Vincent and Harry Dean Stanton, who both passed away in the last week or so. They also neglected to include two comedians who passed less recently: Dick Gregory and Charlie Murphy.
Of course, when Twitter realized the major omission, they gave the Emmys the business.
Charlie Murphy wasn't included in the #Emmys in memoriam segment. Clearly, we must celebrate and give flowers to our own.— Evette Dionne 🤔 (@freeblackgirl) September 18, 2017
THEY DIDNT SHOW DICK GREGORY OR CHARLIE MURPHY TEN GODDAMN MINUTES AFTER THAT MASTURBATORY DIVERSITY MONTAGE GODDAMMIT— David Dennis Jr. (@DavidDTSS) September 18, 2017
How was Charlie Murphy not included in the In Memoriam section? Awful. I hope Dave Chapelle is furious backstage right now. #Emmys— Peter Hoare (@PeterHoare) September 18, 2017
That's right: Dave Chappelle, whose Chappelle's Show program is where many of today's fans first caught a glimpse of Murphy's comedic excellence, won a whole Emmy last night (for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series for his appearance on Saturday Night Live). There's no word on if Chappelle was aware during the show, but Charlie Murphy's reps are definitely not having it.
TMZ reportedly spoke with Domenick Nati, one of Murphy's reps, and said that a producer for the Emmys reached out to them in August about Murphy being featured in the segment. Nati confirmed that a photo of Murphy was sent to the Emmys producers for inclusion in the segment; he was apparently told that they could do "a nice tribute" with what they received. What's even weirder is that Murphy was included in the tribute for the Creative Arts Emmys, which aired on Saturday night on FXX. The thing is, you already know more people watched the Primetime Emmys than the Creative Arts Emmys.
As was mentioned previously, on a night where the Emmys tried to highlight how "diverse" things have gotten, it's a slap in the face to turn around and neglect to include one of the more notable black comedians who passed away this year. Do better, Emmys.