It wasn't quite Meryl Streep crying five different languages, but it was a star-studded turnout as Sarah Jessica Parker, Kelly Osbourne and Whoopi Goldberg were among the celebrities attending Joan Rivers' funeral yesterday.
Hollywood stars flocked to the Temple Emanu-El in Manhattan to pay their final respects to the comedy and TV legend who passed away last Thursday following surgical complications. Andy Cohen, Kathy Griffin and Kristin Chenoweth also turned up to say their final farewell to the legendary comedienne, as did fashion designers Carolina Herrera and Michael Kors.
Mourners lined up outside the synagogue and waited for their names to be checked off the list before walking in to the private memorial service and around 500 spectators and at least 100 media stood behind barricades on Fifth Avenue before the ceremony to honour the 81-year-old.
Howard Stern delivered the eulogy at the memorial service and was said to have struggled to fight back tears as he stood in front of the legendary comedienne's friends and family, lightening the mood by giving a funny but touching speech, in which he referred to Joan as 'the best friend in the world ... a big sister ... a crazy aunt at a bar mitzvah. She fought the stereotype that women couldn't be funny... and she was responsible for putting the red carpet into prime time.'
TV host Hoda Kotb told USA Today: 'He was such a surprise when he got up and spoke. He was teary.' The 50-year-old news anchor also revealed that she felt the service 'felt like a Broadway show with tons of humour, lots of tears and ended with a standing ovation' because of performances from actors Hugh Jackman and Audra McDonald, and Howard's speech.
Joan Rivers' funeral included a performance from Broadway's Audra McDonald who gave a stunning performance of 'Smile' and Hugh Jackman closed the ceremony with Peter Allen's 'Quiet Please, There's a Lady on Stage'.
Rivers passed away last Thursday, a week after she was placed in a medically-induced coma at Mount Sinai hospital, following a cardiac and respiratory arrest while undergoing a routine operation on her vocal cords at a private clinic.