James Gandolfini played Tony Soprano, head of the New Jersey crime family portrayed in HBO's "The Sopranos."
(Photo: Barry Wetcher, AP)
(USA TODAY) The Emmys will add a personal touch to remember some high-profile stars (and a producer) who died in the past year.
In addition to the traditional "In Memoriam" segment with a montage of departed greats, Sunday's 65th Emmy Awards ceremony (CBS, live, 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT) will feature separate tributes to James Gandolfini, Gary David Goldberg, Cory Monteith, Jean Stapleton and Jonathan Winters delivered by friends who knew them well.
Edie Falco will remember Gandolfini, her co-star onThe Sopranos; Michael J. Fox will honor his Family Ties producer, Goldberg; Jane Lynch will talk about her Glee castmate, Monteith; Rob Reiner will pay homage to Stapleton, who played his mother-in-law Edith Bunker on All in the Family; and Robin Williams will salute his mentor, comedian Jonathan Winters, who worked with him on Mork and Mindy.
"If you think about each of these people, they had a significant impact on television in general and on a particular generation," executive producer Ken Ehrlich says. "And we've asked people whose lives they affected to come and talk about them."
Ehrlich says the remembrances won't diminish the importance of others who will be honored in the regular segment, which will be presented in a new format designed to give it added importance.
Ehrlich has been part of an earlier "In Memoriam" innovation on another awards show. He added a musical element to the segment at the Grammy ceremony a decade ago, a live performance of The Clash's London Calling in tribute to Joe Strummer that featured Bruce Springsteen, Elvis Costello and Dave Grohl.
Neil Patrick Harris will host the television awards ceremony.
Bill Keveney, USA TODAY