August 28, 2006

Dick Clark humbled by Emmys tribute

By Ray Richmond

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Too often, it seems, one
has to die in order to receive a tribute from the Academy of
Television Arts & Sciences -- as was the case this year with
Aaron Spelling.

Fortunately, Dick Clark is here, though still battling the
effects of a stroke suffered in late 2004. He was honored
Sunday night on the Emmy stage for his vast contributions to
the television business, particularly the iconic weekly music
series "American Bandstand."

Introduced by Simon Cowell of "American Idol" fame --
perhaps something of an odd choice -- Clark, 76, received a
thunderous standing ovation that seemed almost to embarrass
him. "Sit down, sit down, please," he implored.

Clark's remarks were short but poignant. Speaking
haltingly, he said: "The Emmy people called and asked if I
could walk out and say thanks. My wife joked, 'Walk? He's just
begun to learn to walk again. This show might run a little

He added: "Before I had my stroke, I was thinking about all
of the things I had become involved with over my life: music,
comedy, drama, game and talk shows, even reality TV. I now
realize that I have accomplished my childhood dream: to be in
show business. Everybody should be so lucky to have their
dreams come true. I've been truly blessed. I thank you very,
very much."

And with that, Clark walked off of the stage -- a little
bit slower than he used to be but at the same time seemingly
walking on air.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter The singer, who performed a
tribute to Dick Clark during the show, praised the TV legend
backstage. "He introduced us to all sorts of great music," said
Manilow, who co-wrote the "American Bandstand" theme song. "We
wouldn't have the music we have if it weren't for Dick Clark
continually fighting to introduce pop music to the public."