The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is explaining its controversial decision to omit the late Farrah Fawcett from its "In Memoriam" segment during Sunday's Oscar show.
Executive director Bruce Davis explained to the Associated Press Tuesday that Fawcett was better known for her "remarkable television work," and should thus be honored by the TV industry at the Emmy Awards.
Davis acknowledged that he understood the uproar, but explained "an unusual number of extremely distinguished screenwriters" died in 2009; the Academy struggled to honor them all within the short "In Memoriam" segment.
"In every category, you're going to miss some wonderful people," said Davis. Yet many pointed out the questionable inclusion of "actor" Michael Jackson, the pop music superstar who died on June 25, the same day as Fawcett.
Jackson, David said, posthumously starred in the hit documentary This Is It in 2009.
"Think of all the blogging we would have gotten if we had left him out!" he said.
Still, survivors of Fawcett, who died of cancer at the age of 62, are upset. Her former stepdaughter, Oscar winner Tatum O'Neal, told UsMagazine.com on Tuesday:
"On behalf of myself, my father Ryan O'Neal and my entire family, we are deeply saddened that a truly beautiful and talented actress Farrah Fawcett was not included in the memorial montage during the 82ND ACADEMY AWARDS. We are bereft with this exclusion of such an international icon who inspired so many for so many reasons. Beautiful, talented Farrah will never be forgotten by her family and amazing fans."
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