Oscars 2019 To Go On Without A Host, ABC Boss Karey Burke Confirms

Written by on February 6, 2019

Maria Agcopra – Fourth Estate Contributor

Los Angeles, CA, United States (4E) – For the first time in 30 years, this year’s Oscars will go live without a host.

ABC Entertainment president Karey Burke confirmed that the Academy Awards will go on without a host this year after losing Kevin Hart. The comedian was originally tapped to do the show this year, but later backed out after receiving criticism for controversial tweets he made in the past.

Hart stepped down after old homophobic tweets went viral and caused backlash. According to BBC, he explained that he did not want to be a distraction and was “sorry he had hurt people.”

During her first sit-down with the Television Critics Association, Burke admitted that she was first afraid about the idea of having an Oscars without a host. However, Burke is now positive that the absence of a host will allow the network to achieve their primary goal this year, which is keep the ceremony shorter.

“The producers decided to wisely not have a host and have the presenters and the movies be the stars,” Burke said, as quoted by The Hollywood Reporter. “That’s the best way to keep the show to a brisk three hours.”

In 2018, the Oscars ran for three hours and 53 minutes. The length of time certainly did not appeal to viewers as the ratings took a nosedive to an all-time viewership low of only 26.5 million viewers.

The lack of a host is not the only thing the Oscars is doing differently this year. It’s also the first time that the Academy has three best picture nominees that surpassed the $200 million mark at the box office. Combined, ‘Black Panther’, ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’, and ‘A Star Is Born’ has amassed more than $2 billion.

As to how the show will start, which is usually the time for the host’s speech, Burke said that it will not begin with an award.

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