Ellen, Tom Hanks and Michael Jordan Join Mannequin Challenge Craze at the White House
Prior to receiving their Medal of Freedom from President Obama Tuesday, some of the biggest names in music, film and sports did a star-studded mannequin challenge in the country's most famous residence.
Ellen DeGeneres, Robert De Niro, Tom Hanks, Diana Ross, Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabaar and Bruce Springsteen all joined in with members of the White House staff to perform the latest viral craze.
Ellen posted the video on Twitter.
I'm in. pic.twitter.com/oU344pnYsH— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) November 22, 2016
The video was the brainchild of Diana Ross' daughter, actress Tracee Ellis Ross.
It was the final Medal of Freedom ceremony hosted by Obama and he saved the most iconic names for last.
Among the honorees were Degeneres, Robert Redford, Bill and Melinda Gates, Diana Ross, De Niro, Jordan, Springsteen, Abdul-Jabaar, Cicely Tyson and recently retired Los Angeles Dodgers broadcaster Vin Scully.
“It’s useful, when you think about this incredible collection of people, to realize this is what makes us the greatest nation on Earth. Not because of our differences, but because in our differences we find something in common to share. And what a glorious gift that is,” Obama said at the top of the ceremony.
Obama, a Chicago Bulls fan, was filled with pride presenting one of his heroes, Michael Jordan, with an award.
“When a sport changes its rules, to make it harder just for you…You are good,” Obama said of the former Bulls champion.
He also referenced the six-time NBA champ’s now-infamous “Crying Jordan” meme, saying: “He’s more than just a logo, more than just an internet meme.”
Of course, the internet then created a meta meme of the “Crying Jordan” image on the player’s face from the event.
Tom Hanks beamed as he was honored by Obama and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar had to crouch a little as he received his award.
Obama then declared: "I’m the president, he is the boss."
It was DeGeneres who got the most emotional when it was her turn. She wiped away tears when she sat down, and got a hug and a kiss from De Niro.
Obama himself almost got choked up discussing the talk show host’s achievements.
He discussed how brave the actress was nearly 20 years ago when she announced she was gay on her television show and how it almost cost her a career.
“It’s easy to forget now, when we’ve come so far, where now marriage is equal under the law, just how much courage was required for Ellen to come out on the most public of stages almost 20 years ago," the president said. "Just how important it was not just for the LGBT community, but for all us to see somebody so full of kindness and light. Somebody we liked so much, somebody who could be our neighbor or our colleague or our sister, challenge our own assumptions.
“Remind us that we have more in common than we realize, push our country in the direction of justice. What an incredible burden it was to bear, to risk your career like that. People don’t do that very often.”
Degeneres almost didn't make it to the ceremony because she forgot her credentials for the event.
She tweeted a photo: "they haven't let me in to the white house yet because I forgot my id. #not joking."