We’ve just witnessed the extent to which pride can affect a man who has already accomplished so much: comedian Kevin Hart has stepped down from what was apparently his lifelong dream of hosting the 2019 Oscars, just a couple days after it was announced he got the gig.
It all happened because Hart initially refused to (re)apologize for a series of tweets from several years back that were insensitive to the LGBT community. This is example #43,947 why most of us should just delete Twitter and start over if we want to move up in the world. His refusal to capitulate has already sparked some debate – even I’m a bit surprised that a genuine “sorry” without all the extra drama wouldn’t do for someone who normally plays it safe.
At any rate, the Academy needs a replacement host. They’ve proven that they are willing to go out of left field to try some new shit, (remember the slow-moving train wreck of Anne Hathaway and James Franco from 2011?) so they should probably consider a host or hosts who we’re not expecting.
I think that’s especially pertinent considering this year’s list of Oscar contenders so far is…a bit stale. Black Panther surprised everyone with a Golden Globes nod, but if it made it to the Academy Awards, it would easily be the most exciting film in the pack. A dynamic host needs to make up for the fact that we’re all going to be taking bathroom breaks during most of the awards readings.
If the Academy decides to go the non-Black, but still person of color route, Lin-Manuel Miranda could be a real contender. The Hamilton creator has loads of charisma and no compunction about skewering our Commander in Queef. Plus, Miranda will be right at home in those annoying stage-y Broadway pieces that past hosts like Hugh Jackman and Neil Patrick Harris embraced with open arms.
Here are a few Black folks they might choose to attempt the job. All I know is that if I see Ellen DeGeneres listed one more time, I’m boycotting the Oscars on the grounds of kale and unseasoned chicken.
I’ve seen her name floated around as a potential replacement more than once. I f— with Haddish…I really do. But I think she’s still working through her explosion of success following Girls Trip and that she’d want to play it safe as an Oscars host instead of doing what she does best: riffing hilariously and dirtily. Not sure if “she ready” jokes will carry through a three-hour telecast. Let’s see where she is in a few years. But for now, congrats on the Grammy nomination!
Issa Rae and Natasha Rothwell
Rothwell remains one of (if not the) best parts of Insecure. She and Rae could develop a routine that would give the ceremony a welcome injection of Black Girl Magic. Really, I would pay to watch Rothwell recite the telephone book.
Rock has done the Oscar hosting gig more than once and wouldn’t need a lot of coaching. But I’d really tune in to see mid-90s, Bring the Pain-era Rock get on that stage and go hard in the paint during an era in which everyone has to play it safe. He’s a legend at this point, so he might be generally impervious to whatever hate-Tweets he’d incur by saying whatever the hell he wants.
Let’s be honest: no movie starring The Rock will ever, ever get Oscar nominated for anything outside of maybe best sound production. There’s only so many ways to make the troubled-single-dad-risks-his-life-to-stop-*insert danger here* action film, so the closest he’ll ever get to an Oscar statuette is passing one off to someone else. He wouldn’t get too political, which might make things boring. But some People’s Eyebrow in 2019 would be amusing. Since Hart and Johnson have done all the movies together, the two of them co-hosting with their big-and-little schtick might actually be more interesting than either of them going it alone.
As a successor to the great Jon Stewart on The Daily Show, Noah has proven himself aggressively aiight. But hosting the Oscars might just be his pocket. He’s handsome, charismatic and unafraid to tackle the government or Hollywood. It would be the second gig in which he has to live up to Stewart, who memorably came at the neck of the second Bush administration and the Iraq War during his 2008 hosting sting.
No one owned 2018 quite like Cardi, so why not start off 2019 with a bang? Sure, her hosting the Oscars would be a shit show: the censors wouldn’t even be able to escape for a pee break and all the white folks in the audience who listen to her music on the treadmill wouldn’t quite know what to do with her utter lack of a filter. Plus, I want to hear her say “Beale Street” in her thick, Dominican Bronx accent.
Morgan Freeman, Keith David and Dennis Haysbert
I’ll be completely honest: I just wanna see a bunch of n—s try to out-God-voice each other on stage. Is that too much to ask?
Dustin J. Seibert is a native Detroiter living in Chicago. Miraculously, people have paid him to be aggressively light-skinned via a computer keyboard for nearly two decades. He loves his own mama slightly more than he loves music and exercises every day only so his French fry intake doesn’t catch up to him. Find him at his own site, wafflecolored.com.
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Source: Entertainment – The Grio