It was a mix between a sad affair and a celebration of an amazing artist's life when A-listers like Jay Leno, Frank Darabont, Tom Hanks and many more came together for the memorial service of the late actor Michael Clarke Duncan in September of 2012.
The actor passed away after he had suffered a heart attack in July 2012. Even though he received prompt medical treatment, the fifty-four-year-old never managed to fully recover. He died just two months later on September 3 2012 in Los Angeles, California.
Michael Clarke Duncan: Praise from Stevie Wonder and Stephen King
The legendary Stevie Wonder was among those paying his respects to the late actor - he appeared with a video message and called Michael Clarke Duncan a "gentle giant".
Duncan's performance in The Green Mile alongside Tom Hanks in 1999 had made the actor truly famous. Frank Darabont, who directed the movie, read a letter from Stephen King who wrote the novel the movie is based on: "No one has ever done a character I wrote more justice," King wrote about Duncan.
Tom Hanks' great speech for "Big Mike"
Tom Hanks then gave an amazing speech about his late co-star, in which he recounted a story about how a young Duncan wanted to join a gang on the South Side of Chicago, but his mother wouldn't let him. A fact that the embarrassed "Big Mike" then had to explain to the members of the gang.
"If it wasn't for that mama and the frying pan with a pork chop, we would not be here today celebrating the life of Michael Clarke Duncan," Hanks said. But see for yourself below.
Duncan's talent and his presence on screen are still missed today. May he rest in peace!