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Posted: February 23, 2015

Why Joan Rivers wasn't in the Oscars' 'In Memoriam' segment

By Briana Altergott


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On Sunday night, the Academy Awards presented its annual "In Memoriam" tribute to the talented people Hollywood lost during the past year. (Clip Courtesy A.M.P.A.S.© 2015)

"Through their work, they shared a piece of their soul, and so we will miss them with the same sadness as we miss a old friend. But their work will stand and remind us how lucky we were to have them with us for awhile. There will never be anyone like them, each and every one." (Clip Courtesy A.M.P.A.S.© 2015)

The tribute paid homage to Robin Williams, Maya Angelou and Mike Nichols, to name a few. (Clip Courtesy A.M.P.A.S.© 2015)

But one name was noticeably absent: Joan Rivers.

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Naturally, the Internet freaked out once people realized the comedian, who died in September, wasn't represented.

As a writer for the New York Daily News noted, "The twitter anger about Joan Rivers not being included in the death montage could power a medium-sized city."

Angry fans were quick to blame the Oscars producers. But as Entertainment Weekly points out, an Academy panel decides who or who isn't included in the segment — producers are never involved.

And to be included in the montage, the departed honoree must be a voting member of the Academy, per the official in memoriam rules.

Because of this, the exclusion of big names from the tribute is actually nothing new. Cory Monteith, Farrah Fawcett and Elaine Stritch were all left out of the segment in recent years.

But, no worries. We're guessing the spirit of Joan is writing a few jokes about all this right now. (Video via IFC Films / "Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work")

She'll probably also love that the Academy got some flack for the segment in general — many complained that no movie clips of actors were shown this year. 

This video includes images from Getty Images.

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