Joan got the Hollywood sendoff that she talked about her in book ‘I Hate Everyone … Starting With Me.’ The comedian’s funeral, held at Temple Emanu-El, Sept. 7, was filled with Hollywood’s elite and even including a performance by Hugh Jackson, and the NYPD’s bagpipe band playing show tunes!
It was Joan Rivers from head-to-toe. Joan’s daughter Melissa Rivers managed to create a funeral that not only paid tribute to her, but remained upbeat, just like Joan would have wanted. Kathy Griffin, Sarah Jessica Parker, Whoopi Goldberg and Donald Trump were just a few of the famous faces that entered Temple Emanu-El, around 11am, Sept. 7, which was filled with white gardenias, Joan’s favorite flowers.
Joan Rivers’ Funeral — Melissa Rivers Has ‘New York, New York’ Played As Tribute
Joan wanted it to be a “scene” outside of her funeral and she got her wish. Every single media outlet stood lined Fifth Avenue, outside Temble Emanu-El. Although Joan said in her book that she wanted “Meryl Streep crying, in five different accents,” she got something a bit better.
Not only did the New York Gay Men’s Chorus kick off the service with songs like “That’s Entertainment,” “Nothing Like A Dame,” “What A Wonderful World,” and “Big Spender,” but Hugh Jackman got on the stage and sang “Quiet Please, There’s A Lady On Stage.”
Inside Edition host, Deborah Norville, spoke and gave a tribute to Joan. She told reporters after the funeral that there were so many orchids and flowers that “you can’t see the altar.”
Broadway star Audra McDonald also sang, “Smile,” one of Joan’s favorite songs. A big moment of the memorial came when Melissa got up and read a letter in which she pretended to be Joan’s landlord! She joked and said her mom was late on her rent and was in trouble for tearing down a wall without getting approval.
Rivers’ daughter, Melissa, read a letter she wrote in which she pretended to be her mother’s landlord. She said her mother was late on the rent and had torn down a wall without permission because she wanted more space.
The funeral ended with a bang — Melissa had the New York Police Department’s bagpipe band play Broadway hits like “New York, New York,” and “Give My Regards to Broadway” during the processional.
Joan’ Memorial: Fans Lined The Street
We told you that an eyewitness at the funeral told Us Weekly: “It really was reminiscent of a red carpet affair — plenty of lights and cameras. There were fans everywhere and people in taxis passing by shouting ‘We love Joan!'”
Howard Stern spoke as well and he said that Joan was “the best friend in the world … a big sister … a crazy aunt at a bar mitzvah.”
Joan went into cardiac arrest, Aug. 28, during a routine throat surgery and she passed away on Sept. 4, surrounded by family and friends.
— Chloe Melas