Joan Rivers leaves behind a thriving television career (Updated)

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Image Credit: Andrew Southam/E! Entertainment

Joan Rivers may have been 81 when she died Thursday, but she was still a ubiquitous presence on TV, appearing on a reality show with her daughter, Melissa, and sharing her strong opinions — to say the least —on Fashion Police. She had even filmed two episodes of an upcoming season of Celebrity Apprentice.

Rivers, of course, was a regular on E!’s fashion roundtable show, where she routinely doled out her celebrity style barbs. The network announced earlier today that the show would take two weeks off in light of her hospitalization. Following her death, it released the following statement:

E! and NBCUniversal send our deepest condolences to Melissa, Cooper and her entire extended family on this incredibly sad day.  For decades Joan has made people laugh, shattered glass ceilings and revolutionized comedy.  She was unapologetic and fiercely dedicated to entertaining all of us and has left an indelible mark on the people that worked with her and on her legions of fans.  She’s been a much beloved member of the E! family for over 20 years and the world is less funny without her in it.  Today our hearts are heavy knowing Joan will not be bounding through the doors.

As for the future of the show, a representative for E! commented: “Right now we are mourning our beloved Joan.  We will respond at a later date with programming updates.” Outside of her fashion pursuits, Rivers won Celebrity Apprentice in 2009—a major element of the 2010 documentary about her life—and had filmed two episodes of the next season of the series, appearing as a task advisor, NBC confirmed to EW. The cycle has no air date yet.

Rivers’ WE reality show with her daughter Melissa, Joan & Melissa: Joan Know Best?, just wrapped up its fourth season in May, and that network is planning a marathon of the show on Sunday. WE released a statement upon her death: “Joan Rivers was truly one of a kind – a trailblazer, an icon and, above all else, a gracious, thoughtful and candidly funny woman who loved her family, friends and fans dearly across a legendary career that spanned five decades. We were fortunate and honored to have her on WE tv and to allow our viewers to share her life, humor and indefatigable spirit. We send our deepest condolences to her daughter Melissa, grandson Cooper, and all her family, friends and fans.”

Update: As Deadline reported, Rivers will also be one of the subjects of the documentary MAKERSWomen in Comedy, airing on PBS September 30.

Update 2: EW confirmed that QVC canceled all Joan Rivers programming after learning of her illness. The shopping network released the following statement:

We are greatly saddened by the loss of our dear friend Joan Rivers.  She has been a special part of our QVC family for 24 years, and we knew Joan not only as an extraordinary comedian, writer, producer and business leader, but as a generous and caring spirit, who inspired us to be better every day.  Joan truly loved her customers, and delighted in bringing joy and inspiration to their lives over these last many years.  We extend our deepest sympathies to her family, friends and fans.


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