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Old 04-15-2007, 12:55 AM   #39
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It's a Star-Studded Extravaganza as TV Land Honors Lucille Ball, Roots, The Brady Bunch, Taxi and Hee Haw

Forest Whitaker, Morgan Freeman, Carol Burnett, The Judds, Luke Wilson, Cicely Tyson, Willie Nelson, Sharon Stone, Ben Vereen, Danny DeVito, k.d. lang, Roy Clark, Tony Danza, Masi Oka, Kirstie Alley, Heather Mills, Valerie Bertinelli, Leonard Nimoy and Mackenzie Phillips Among Dozens of Performers Celebrating Classic TV

SANTA MONICA, Calif., April 15 -- It was an unforgettable evening as celebrities from television, music and film bestowed special tribute awards tonight to some of television's most iconic series and stars at the fifth annual TV Land Awards. The honorees included Lucille Ball (Legacy of Laughter Award), The Brady Bunch (Pop Culture Award), Roots (Anniversary Award), Hee Haw (Entertainer Award), Taxi (Medallion Award) and Heroes (Future Classic Award). The TV Land Awards was taped at The Barker Hangar on Saturday, April 14 and will premiere on TV Land on Sunday, April 22 at 9 p.m. ET/PT. The show will also be seen on Nick at Nite at 11 p.m. ET/PT.

This gala event featured some unforgettable moments such as when legendary actress and comedienne Carol Burnett and Emmy Award-winning actress Kirstie Alley presented Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz Jr. with the Legacy of Laughter Award in honor of their mother, Lucille Ball. Actresses Valerie Bertinelli and Mackenzie Phillips of One Day at a Time presented the cast of The Brady Bunch with the Pop Culture Award. Grammy Award-winning country superstar Willie Nelson performed hits "On The Road Again" and "City of New Orleans" in a tribute to Hee Haw. Academy Award-winning actors Forest Whitaker and Morgan Freeman presented the cast of Roots with the Anniversary Award celebrating the epic 30th Anniversary. The cast of Taxi -- Danny DeVito, Jeff Conaway, Tony Danza, Judd Hirsch, Carol Kane, Randall Carver and creator James L. Brooks -- were presented with The Medallion Award by actress Sharon Stone. Actor Luke Wilson presented Heroes creator and executive producer Tim Kring with this year's Future Classic Award along with executive producers Dennis Hammer and Allan Arkush and cast members Masi Oka, Leonard Roberts, Noah Gray-Cabey, Zachary Quinto, Santiago Cabrera and Jack Coleman.

Other memorable moments included:

-- A hilarious videotaped intro where host Kelly Ripa reenacted the show opens to several memorable sitcoms including The Mary Tyler Moore Show, That Girl, and Laverne & Shirley. The package ended with Kelly flying above the live audience and making her entrance as "Sister Bertrille" from The Flying Nun.
-- The Judds reunited for a monumental performance for the first time in nearly a decade and sang "Mama, He's Crazy," the very first song they sang on Hee Haw.
-- TV's most beloved TV stars spoofed one of television's most popular shows, Ugly Betty, in a parody entitled "Ugly Betty - White." The parody starred Betty White with cameos by Erik Estrada, Joan Collins, George Hamilton, Charo and Peter Scolari.
-- Inside The Actor's Studio's James Lipton in a tongue-in-cheek segment for The Brady Bunch tribute interviewing cast members using clips from the show.
-- Lindsay Wagner of The Bionic Woman using her "bionic speed" to accept the Fan Favorite Award for "Greatest Gear," which was voted online at TVLand.com. Charity activist Heather Mills of Dancing with the Stars presented Wagner with this award.
-- A performance at the end of the show by The Brady Bunch's "The Silver Platters," as Maureen McCormick and Barry Williams were joined by host Kelly Ripa -- singing the unforgettable songs "Keep On" and "It's A Sunshine Day."

The evening featured a roster of some of the most recognized talent in the history of entertainment as this year's Academy Award-winner Forest Whitaker, Academy Award-winner Morgan Freeman, Sharon Stone, Luke Wilson, Valerie Bertinelli, Mackenzie Phillips, Kirstie Alley, Lindsay Wagner, Jerry Mathers and Tony Dow all took part in the event. Trophy presenters for the evening were Kathy Garver and Johnny Whitaker from classic TV show Family Affair.

The tribute awards included the following:

THE LEGACY OF LAUGHTER AWARD

This award is presented to an entertainer whose awe-inspiring work continues to serve as an inspiration and a guiding force. This year's recipient is Lucille Ball. Her comedy always delivered -- from the broadest slapstick to the most-nuanced verbal reaction. Her gift is indeed a legacy. It serves as both an ideal for those who have followed her, and also in and of itself -- timelessly providing the invigorating, healing power of laughter. Kirstie Alley kicked off this salute and Carol Burnett presented this award to Lucille Ball's children, Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz Jr.

THE ANNIVERSARY AWARD

This award is presented to a series that needs no further paeans, but it is nonetheless fitting, and TV Land's honor, to celebrate Roots. 30 years ago this epic gathered Americans in extraordinary numbers for an unforgettable communal television experience. A series full of anguish and terror, redemption and hope, Roots was and still is extraordinary television. Academy Award-winning actors Morgan Freeman and Forest Whitaker presented this award to the cast of Roots -- LeVar Burton, Louis Gossett Jr., Cicely Tyson, Leslie Uggams, John Amos, Ben Vereen, Todd Bridges, Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs, Georg Stanford Brown and Olivia Cole.

THE POP CULTURE AWARD

This award is presented to a show that has crossed the line from television series to pop culture phenomenon, this year's honoree is The Brady Bunch. Like almost no other show before or since, this series transcended its humble origins as a Friday night family viewing staple, to become a television touchstone for many generations. Valerie Bertinelli and Mackenzie Phillips presented this award to the cast -- Ann B. Davis, Barry Williams, Christopher Knight, Florence Henderson, Maureen McCormick, Mike Lookinland and Susan Olsen and producer Lloyd Schwartz.

THE MEDALLION AWARD

This award is presented to a television series which has stood the test of time and ranks among the most memorable and celebrated shows in TV history. TV Land honored Taxi as this year's recipient. At times heartfelt, at other times hilarious, the series was a prime example of the magic of a talented cast of individuals melding into an ensemble -- a creative whole that was greater than the sum of its wonderful parts. Sharon Stone presented the cast of Taxi -- Danny DeVito, Jeff Conaway, Tony Danza, Judd Hirsch, Carol Kane and Randall Carver, along with creator James L. Brooks, with this award.

THE ENTERTAINER AWARD

This award is presented to a television series that formed a bond with its devoted audience, becoming a cherished appointment full of characters and performances that we welcomed into our homes each week. This year the award is presented to Hee Haw. With rollicking comedy provided by the beloved cast, and musical performances by country's greatest singers and musicians, Hee Haw was truly an American original. Grammy Award-winning singer k.d. lang presented Roy Clark, Gunilla Hutton, Misty Rowe, Linda Thompson, Sam Lovullo, Marianne Gordon Rogers, Barbi Benton and The Hager twins with this award.

FUTURE CLASSIC AWARD

NBC's critically-acclaimed smash hit series, Heroes, was awarded this year's TV Land Future Classic Award. The Future Classic Award is presented to the one show which premiered between January 1 and December 2006 that TV Land feels best exemplifies an emerging television classic. Luke Wilson and Leonard Nimoy presented creator and executive producer Tim Kring, executive producers Dennis Hammer and Allan Arkush, and members of the cast of Heroes -- Masi Oka, Leonard Roberts, Noah Gray-Cabey, Zachary Quinto, Santiago Carbrera and Jack Coleman with this award.

For a complete list of winners, log onto www.tvland.com.

The fifth annual TV Land Awards is presented by M&M'S® Brand Chocolate Candies.

Michael Levitt (Billboard Music Awards, Producers Guild Awards, TV Land Awards 2003-2006) serves as Executive Producer, Emmy-award winning Glenn Weiss as Director (The Miss Teen USA Pageant 2005, BET Awards 2005, The 59th Annual Tony Awards 2005) and Greg Sills as Supervising Producer (Knots Landing Reunion: Together Again, The Teen Choice Awards 2005, Nickelodeon Kids Choice Awards 2005). Sal Maniaci (Brady Bunch Reunion and Dick Van Dyke Revisited) and Larry W. Jones also serve as Executive Producers.

TV Land and all related logos and titles are trademarks of Viacom International Inc.
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