With­out Kevin Hart, who’ll host Os­cars?

The Mercury News - - News - By Martha Ross [email protected]­yare­anews­group.com Con­tact Martha Ross at 925-943-8254.

The Os­cars is fac­ing a cri­sis be­cause Kevin Hart is step­ping down as the awards show host, just days af­ter he got the gig.

To some crit­ics, Hart wasn’t the right choice in the first place. While he might be funny, en­ter­tain­ing and top­i­cal, he also lacked a cer­tain gra­cious­ness and broad ap­peal needed to host a glob­ally tele­vised show that’s ul­ti­mately about cel­e­brat­ing Hol­ly­wood.

On Thurs­day night, the stand-up co­me­dian an­nounced he was step­ping down for an­other rea­son: Comic tweets about LGBTQ peo­ple — which re­lied on a lot of an­gry, ho­mo­pho­bic stereo­types — emerged from eight years ago.

So now the Acad­emy needs to scram­ble to find a host for the Feb. 24 show, which will air on ABC. Per­haps it should con­sider some en­ter­tain­ers whose names were floated as po­ten­tially suit­able hosts ear­lier this week, be­fore the Hart de­ba­cle. Among them:

•Tif­fany Had­dish and Maya Ru­dolph: The comic duo was “the bright spot” in this year’s “oth­er­wise ex­haus­tive Os­cars tele­cast,” the Guardian wrote. The pair came on to an­nounce the awards for doc­u­men­tary and live-ac­tion short with an ex­tended gag that in­fused the cer­e­mony “with much-needed self­mock­ery.”

• Key & Peele: Kee­ganMichael Key and Jor­dan Peele, for­mer hosts of a pop­u­lar sketch-com­edy show, have popped up on a cou­ple of crit­ics’ lists.

•Lin-Manuel Mi­randa, pos­si­bly with Emily Blunt: The “Hamil­ton” cre­ator and star is known for his song-and-dance show­man­ship. He also has been a charm­ing pres­ence on the me­dia tour with Emily Blunt for “Mary Pop­pins Re­turns,” the up­com­ing movie from Dis­ney, which owns ABC.

• Robert Downey Jr.: Vul­ture notes that Downey is an­other Dis­ney-con­nected star, with his “Iron Man” roles in the Mar­vel Cin­e­matic Uni­verse fran­chise.

• Dwayne “The Rock” John­son: John­son is an­other pop­u­lar star with charisma and an af­fa­ble, up­beat pres­ence. Vul­ture added that he has a Dis­ney movie, “Jun­gle Cruise,” com­ing out in 2020.


The ap­pear­ance by Tif­fany Had­dish, left, and Maya Ru­dolph at the 2018 Acad­emy Awards has made them pos­si­ble can­di­dates to host the next show in Fe­bru­ary.

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