Notably, the night marked the last time Barack and Michelle Obama would be attending the event as president and first lady.
"We can agree that the White House has given us a leader who is passionate, intelligent and dignified," Colbert said onstage as Obama stood up and waved. "Sir, I don't know why you stood up, I was talking about Michelle," he further joked.
Taylor was given a surprise tribute from former president Bill Clinton who noted, "His music and lyrics are the seams in the fabric of our national life."
For Pacino, Spacey gave his best impression of the actor and lead the audience to do the same while explaining that The Godfather star has "created characters that are unforgettable."
The event concluded with a tribute to the Eagles who were supposed to to honored last year but had to delay due to the declining health of late founding member Glenn Frey.
"Well done, boys, and peace and love to everybody," Ringo Starr said before leading a collection of music stars including Kings of Leon, Bob Seger and Juanes for the evening's final performance.