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Luke Perry

Oscars Explain Why Luke Perry Wasn't Part of 'In Memoriam' Segment

Gettyimages | VALERIE MACON
By Robin Burks

The Academy has attempted to explain why Luke Perry, among others, was not mentioned during the 'In Memoriam' segment of the 2020 Oscars celebration. Perry, who died after a stroke in 2019, was denied any acknowledgment in the section, which angered many of his fans. What perplexed most people, though, was the fact that Perry actually appeared in one of this year's nominated films, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood. But his name and photo were notably absent during 'In Memoriam.'

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Other Omissions

Cameron Boyce
Gettyimages | Alberto E. Rodriguez

The Academy also failed to make mention of several other stars during the 'In Memoriam' segment, during which pop star Billy Eilish sang the Beatles' "Yesterday." Disney star Cameron Boyce, who starred in The Descendants films, also passed away in 2019, but was not mentioned. Neither was horror icon Sid Haig or legendary comedian Tim Conway: both men also passed away in 2019. To many Oscars viewers, it seemed like huge slights to those entertainers' fans, as well as their friends and families.

The Academy's excuse

Giphy | The Academy Awards

Of course, the Academy has finally responded to the controversy. Their reasoning? It has everything to do with "limited available time." That's right: the Oscars left out Perry, along with these other stars, because there wasn't enough time. And if that seems like an odd excuse, it really is: the Oscars are notorious for going over their allotted time to begin with, so adding a few names and photos doesn't seem like it would harm the program too much. But it also shows that the Academy didn't think as much of Perry and these other actors as important as those who were given time during the segment.

Oscars have lowest ratings ever

Oscars
Gettyimages | vzphotos

Perhaps the ommissions are just a sign of the times that the Oscars are no longer seen as relevant. The Academy continues to come under fire for its lack of celebrating diversity, particularly movies made by and with women and people of color. The films often celebrated are also not the ones that real audiences are actually going to see: genre movies often get left out of awards seasons. That's probably why it's no huge surprise that this year's Oscars were the least-watched in history.

Some consolation

Luke Perry
Gettyimages | Gabriel Olsen

The Academy did offer some consolation to Perry's fans, as well as fans of others who were omitted during the 'In Memorian' part of the event. Here's the official statement:

“The Academy receives hundreds of requests to include loved ones and industry colleagues in the Oscars In Memoriam segment. An executive committee representing every branch considers the list and makes selections for the telecast based on limited available time. All the submissions are included on Oscar.com and will remain on the site throughout the year. Luke Perry and Cameron Boyce are remembered in the Oscar.com gallery.”

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