Oscars snub as Farrah Fawcett left out of in memoriam tribute
Farrah Fawcett was left out of the 'in memoriam' segment of the Oscars ceremony, prompting a flurry of complaints.
The former Charlie's Angels star died of cancer in June last year, aged 62.
While Patrick Swayze, Brittany Murphy and other actors were included in the roll-call of those who died in 2009, Fawcett was omitted.
Oscars spokesman Leslie Unger said: "Every year it's an unfortunate reality that we can't include everybody."
It has been suggested that Fawcett was left out because she was predominantly a television actress, rather than a film star.
However, the producers saw fit to include Michael Jackson. And Fawcett fans pointed out that she appeared in a string of films, including Logan's Run and Dr T and the Women.
The decision prompted complaints on Twitter, with film critic Roger Ebert among those who questioned Fawcett's omission. "No Farrah Fawcett in the memorial tribute? Major fail," he wrote on Twitter.
The tribute, accompanied by James Taylor playing the Beatles' In My Life, also featured Jean Simmons, Natasha Richardson, David Carradine and Roy E Disney.
Speaking before the ceremony, Academy executive director Bruce Davis said the memorial section always presented problems.
"It is the single most troubling element of the Oscar show every year, because more people die each year than can possibly be included in that segment," he said.
A shortlist of more than 100 names is whittled down to around 30 for the broadcast. "It gets close to agonising by the end. You are dropping people who the public knows. It's just not comfortable," Davis admitted, adding that he was prepared to get calls from angry relatives of those who didn't make the final montage.
"They're brokenhearted sometimes. There's nothing you can say that will make them feel better.
"I always hope that they take some comfort that the very fact that they worked in movies confers a certain amount of immortality... and their work lasts longer than being briefly acknowledged in a short clip sequence at one show in one year."