DUBAI: For the first time since 1989, the much-anticipated Oscars will have no host this year, after Kevin Hart pulled out of the gig three days after being announced the American actor-comedian would be emcee at the awards night.
After weeks of speculation from critics and fans, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will go ahead with the ceremony on February 24 without a replacement for Hart, insiders told entertainment magazine Variety.
Hart dropped out as awards host after the Academy asked him to apologize for his past homophobic remarks that resurfaced online.
The “Jumanji” star, who was seen to help boost the Oscars’ viewership by hosting the event, refused to apologize, saying “there's no more conversation about it ... I'm over that, I'm over the moment,” in an interview with American TV network ABC.
According to reports, producers of the awards show will delegate the role of emcee to a selected group of celebrity A-listers who will introduce various segments.
Cast members of the Marvel superhero movie “Avengers” are among the celebrities the producers are eyeing for, according to US-based entertainment website The Hollywood Reporter.
Oscar nominations will be released on Jan. 22, a month ahead of one of the biggest nights in the film industry.