Oprah Winfrey began taping her final episodes before a crowd of 20,000 in the United Center yesterday, and the show’s producers surprised Oprah with a flurry of big-name stars, each of whom showered her with the adulation necessary to sustain her massive ego.
Tom Hanks hosted the first hour of taping, featuring appearances by Tom Cruise, Madonna, Dakota Fanning, Halle Berry, Katie Holmes, and Queen Latifah, plus performances by Beyoncé, Rascal Flatts, and Josh Groban with Patti Labelle. The second hour was hosted by Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, and they brought out guests like Michael Jordan, Jerry Seinfeld, Simon Cowell, and — in her first public appearance since SchwarzenbastardGate — Maria Shriver. The second hour also featured a duet by Jamie Foxx and Stevie Wonder, Maya Angelou reading a poem she’d written for Oprah (while backed by Alicia Keys on piano), and Usher singing with a full symphony. You can read the whole report here.
Meh, she coulda gone bigger. I would’ve been more impressed if she gave away 20,000 cars.