Cedric The Entertainer kicked off the 2021 Emmy Awards with a performance of the song “Just A Friend” by Biz Markie. But, he didn’t do it alone. He was joined by some of his fellow celebrities, one of which was Rita Wilson, who stole the show.
Wilson participated in rapping the lyrics to “Just A Friend” and she was full of energy. See her as she rapped her heart out in the below Twitter video.
Several Celebrities Performed in the 2021 Emmys Opening Performance
The opening performance of the Emmy Awards was a tribute to late music artist Biz Markie and LL Cool J was another celebrity who participated in the set. Others who joined in on the performance include Lil Dicky, Mandy Moore, Tracee Ellis Ross, MJ Rodriguez and Billy Porter.
There were also plenty of other stars in the rooms who sang along with microphones at their tables. Those who didn’t sing were standing by their chairs, clapping and cheering.
Even A-listers Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones were enjoying Wilson’s performance.
Biz Markie died on July 16, 2021, as reported by TMZ. He was 57 years old and his cause of death was reported as complications from his Type II Diabetes. NPR stated that Biz Markie had had a stroke three months prior to his death.
Cedric The Entertainer Sought Advice From Other Hosts
Ahead of the 2021 Emmy Awards, Cedric The Entertainer told the Associated Press that he was contacting other stars for advice on hosting the show. He said, “Steve Harvey, my good friend who’s hosted a lot of these ‘big nights,’ he had some great tidbits for me … And if you have a line on Tina Fey, I don’t have her number, but I would love to talk to her.”
He also said, “I feel really blessed to have such a long career and one that has mainly just been kind of gradual and steady. I laugh a lot on my job. I make people laugh. It’s a good time.”
Executive Producer Ian Stewart teased to Deadline that the opening performance of the Emmy Awards would feature several celebrities. Stewart said that the performance “is going to be a lot of people participating, singing, rapping. It’s hopefully going to be a very impactful start, a ton of fun … I think you will recognize a lot of people.”
Stewart also explained that the opening performance wouldn’t run long. He said to Deadline, “Sometimes it takes up to 16 minutes to get to an award, so we are going to get to the awards really fast. We are going to have a very fun opening and then we are getting down to giving away some of these fantastic awards to some of these fantastically gifted and deserving nominees.”
In addition to Rita Wilson rapping and singing on stage at the 2021 Emmy Awards, she also rapped earlier in the evening. Wilson rapped the Jay-Z lyric “I don’t drop molly, I rock Tom Ford!” on the red carpet with E! News. It was her response to host Karamo when he asked her who designed her red carpet look.