Controversy has arisen surrounding Sunday night's In Memoriam segment, set to honor the recently passed James Gandolfini, Gary David Goldberg, Jean Stapleton, Jonathan Winters, and Cory Monteith.
Critics have questioned executive producer Ken Ehrlich's picks for the tribute, purporting that they ignore iconic actors like Larry Hagman and Jack Klugman in favor of fresher Hollywood faces like Monteith's, the 31-year-old Glee star who died this year of a drug overdose.
Ehrlich defended Monteith's inclusion, saying it will resonate with younger audiences. "Cory’s appeal was to maybe a little different generation than some of the others we were honoring."
Host Neil Patrick Harris gave a rundown of the segment, which will consist of close friends of the departed actors speaking their praises: "[F]ive different people that we chose sort of from different areas of television are being spoken about by people who were important to them...[They'll speak about them] not in a pitying way, but I think in a respectful, classy way that will make you remember their life in a positive, forward-momentum kind of style."