Known for her sharp, acid-tongued jokes, she owned the male-dominated industry of late night talk shows and struck fear in badly dressed celebs on Hollywood red carpets (read: E! Fashion Police). She was hardy, diligently working at rebuilding her career and life after a failed attempt to make it as a late night show host. Armed with material and substance, she was ready to slam anyone from Miley Cyrus to Elizabeth Taylor.
But her career was not just about “making fun” of others – she was very open to making fun of herself too.
On an appearance level, she was best known for her trademark heavily plastic surgery-crafted face. In 202, David Letterman poked at the plastic surgery issue when he said to her, “You don’t look exactly like the Joan Rivers I used to know.” but she didn’t flinch. Instead, she replied something to the effect of, “Our business is so youthful…”
As they say, it’s incredibly important to know how to laugh at yourself sometimes!
Last Thursday, the Emmy winner and Tony nominee was hospitalised suddenly in Manhattan after she became unresponsive and had gone into cardiac arrest during a routine outpatient procedure at Yorkville Endoscopy. Several news outlets reported that Rivers was there to undergo vocal-cord surgery.
Mere hours ago, her daughter Melissa Rivers confirmed that Joan Rivers has passed away at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, surrounded by family and close friends. She was 81 years old.
Melissa Rivers released an official statement following Joan Rivers’ death:
It is with great sadness that I announce the death of my mother, Joan Rivers. She passed peacefully at 1:17 p.m. surrounded by family and close friends. My son and I would like to thank the doctors, nurses, and staff of Mount Sinai Hospital for the amazing care they provided for my mother.
Cooper and I have found ourselves humbled by the outpouring of love, support, and prayers we have received from around the world. They have been heard and appreciated.
My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh. Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon.
Joan Rivers, the raucous, acid-tongued comedian who crashed the male-dominated realm of late-night talk shows and turned Hollywood red carpets into danger zones for badly dressed celebrities, died Thursday. She was 81.
The New York state health department is investigating the circumstances.
Rest in peace, Joan Rivers.