Emmys to Honor Robin Williams
The late comedian was an eight-time nominee and took home two Emmys during his career
Robin Williams will definitely have a place at the 66th Annual Emmy Awards.
The executive producer of the ceremony that will air Aug. 25 on NBC promises to include plenty of tributes to the 63-year-old comedian, who was found dead in his home Monday.
“Plans for the In Memoriam segment are in discussion,” said Executive Producer Don Mischer in a statement to PEOPLE. “While we are all still coming to terms with this week’s tragic news, we are working to give Robin Williams the proper and meaningful remembrance he so well deserves.”
Typically, the In Memoriam section of the ceremony pays tribute to personalities in front of and behind the camera who died over the previous 12 months. Award show producers are accustomed to making last-minute additions to the segment, like when the Grammys in 2012 honored Whitney Houston, who died the day before the CBS telecast.
It is likely that many of the Emmy presenters will also share remembrances of Williams, who began his acting career in TV with a recurring role on Happy Days that led to the spinoff Mork & Mindy. He was nominated eight times for an Emmy and won twice for variety specials he did in 1987 and 1988.
One of Williams’s greatest accomplishments on the small screen that also garnered an Emmy nomination was his work hosting the Comic Relief specials for HBO that helped the homeless. Williams, along with Billy Crystal and Whoopi Goldberg, helped to raise more than $80 million from the 14-plus concerts, according to founder Bob Zmuda.
“Nobody was more vocal about helping the homeless than Robin Williams,” Zmuda told PEOPLE. “Robin came from money. He was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. His dad owned a big car dealership in Chicago and they were very well off. Robin always felt a little guilty of all the good things he was given, so he had a real place in his heart for people who were homeless and suffering.”
Ironically, the HBO specials were so good at showcasing the hosting talents of Crystal and Goldberg that both went on to emcee award shows – but not Williams.
“Everybody realized that Robin could never host the Academy Awards or the Emmys because he’s so improvisational,” Zmuda recalled. “They would never be able to get one award off. He would riff throughout the show. If you watch some of the Comic Reliefs, sometimes Whoopi would go put her hand over Robin’s mouth, or they couldn’t get the next act out there to perform.”
For more on Robin Williams’s tragic death and his legacy of comic genius, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday
The Williams family is asking well-wishers to send contributions to charities close to the actor’s heart in lieu of flowers. Suggested organizations include St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Challenged Athletes, USO, the Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center, the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation and Glide Memorial Church in San Francisco.