2021 Emmys: The Best and Biggest Moments of the Night!

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A celebration of all things TV! Hollywood's star-studded ceremony honoring the past year in television greatness made for a really exciting viewing experience.

The Television Academy's 73rd annual Primetime Emmy Awards was a return to the in-person ceremony after last year's hybrid show, and was led by comedian Cedric the Entertainer, who brought his warm laugh and humorous sensibilities to the A-list proceedings.

From a fun opening monologue to some touching and heartfelt acceptance speeches, the night was filled with some truly memorable Hollywood highlights.

Here's a look at all the biggest, best and most emotional moments from Sunday's Emmy Awards.
 

Star-Studded Biz Markie Tribute Kicks Off the Show

This year's Emmy Awards honored the late music star Biz Markie -- who died on July 16 -- with a fun tribute to his hit single, "Just a Friend." Lil Dickie, a rapping Rita Wilson, LL Cool J and more came together for a lively intro that set the energy level for the night and served as a nice nod to the late artist.


Cedric the Entertainer Relives Iconic TV Moments

Throughout the night as host, Cedric entertained the audience by jokingly revealing how he was actually at several different major TV moments from the past year -- including when Tom Brady threw the Lombardi Trophy to a teammate on a different water boat during a river parade celebrating the Super Bowl victory.
 

John Oliver's Selfless Acceptance Speech

After Last Week Tonight won for Outstanding Variety Talk Series, John Oliver earned the Emmy for Outstanding Variety Talk Show Host, and used the first half of his speech to share his respect and thanks for Conan O'Brien -- who was also nominated -- for "30 years of inspiring comedy writers." He also shared a special shout-out to the late Norm Macdonald, and the whole speech reminded everyone of exactly why Oliver seems to win the Emmy every time.
 

Stars Remember Michael K. Williams

While the late Michael K. Williams didn't take home the award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series, presenter Kerry Washington made sure to remember him with a touching tribute, praising his talent, his genuine humanity and sharing her love for his memory.


'Schitt's Creek' Reunion Is a Delight

The Rose family -- Dan Levy, Catherine O'Hara, Annie Murphy and Eugene Levy -- came together for a wonderful Schitt's Creek reunion to present the awards for Outstanding Comedy Writing and Outstanding Comedy Directing awards. Together again, they proved they still have every ounce of the wonderfully awkward chemistry that made Schitt's Creek such a groundbreaking and beloved sitcom in the first place.


The No Emmy Support Group

Easily the best comedy bit of the night came from a group of TV icons who joined together for a sketch about a support group for actors who have never won an Emmy despite a career in front of the camera. Scott Bakula, Alyson Hannigan, Fred Savage and Jason Alexander joined Cedric and hilariously lamented the lack of Emmy wins with some top-notch self-deprecating humor.


Jean Smart Pays Tearful Tribute to Her Late Husband

Jean Smart took home the award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series for her role on Hacks, and the celebrated star used her speech to pay heartfelt tribute to her late husband. "Before I say anything else I have to acknowledge my late husband, Richard Gilliland, who passed away six months ago, yesterday," Smart said, with tears in her eyes. "I would not be here without him, and without his kind of putting his career on the back burner so I could take advantage of all the wonderful opportunities that I have had."


RuPaul Makes Emmys History

The RuPaul's Drag Race host earned his 11th Emmy win on Sunday, taking home the statuette for Outstanding Competition Program. The award makes the TV icon the most Emmy-awarded Black person in the history of the program. Thanking the Academy and their production team, the host dedicated the win to the "children" on the show and those watching. "Thanks to all of our lovely children on our show from around the world. They are so gracious to tell their stories of courage and how to navigate this difficult life, even more difficult today," he said. "This is for you and for you kids out there watching. You have a tribe that is waiting for you, we are waiting for you, baby. Come on to Mama Ru!"


Michaela Coel Delivers Heartfelt Dedication

Michaela Coel accepted the award for Outstanding Writing for a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie and delivered an inspiring speech that moved the audience. The performer, who was accepting the honor for her series, I May Destroy You, dedicated her win to "every single survivor of sexual assault." Coel created, wrote, co-directed and executive produced the series, which was inspired by her own experience as a sexual assault survivor.

"I just wrote a little something, for writers, really," Coel shared in her speech. "Write the tale that scares you, that makes you feel uncertain, that is uncomfortable. I dare you. In a world that entices us to browse through the lives of others to help us determine how we feel about ourselves, and see in turn still the need to be constantly visible, for visibility these days seems to equate to success. Do not be afraid to disappear, from it, from us, for a while and see what comes to you in the silence."


Leon Bridges, Jon Batiste and Uzo Aduba Honor the Stars We've Lost This Year

Toward the end of the ceremony, Uzo Aduba took the stage to share a sweet message to the memories of the entertainers and creatives we've lost in a heartfelt "In Memoriam" segment. "Over the past year, we have lost so many of our loved ones, but we treasure our memory of each of them, we honor their work, and we rejoice in having them in our lives," Aduba shared, before introducing Leon Bridges and Jon Batiste, who delivered a touching performance of Bridges' emotional tune, "River," as the montage of late celebs, writers, directors and producers played on the towering screens behind them.

 

The 2021 Primetime Emmy Awards, hosted by Cedric the Entertainer, aired live Sunday, Sept. 19 on CBS and Paramount+. For complete Emmys coverage, stay tuned to ETonline.com.

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