Well folks, it’s official. Comedian Chris Rock will host the 88th annual Academy Awards. Rock confirmed the news himself Wednesday morning (October 21st) on Twitter with a brief message: “Look who’s back. #Oscars,” he wrote alongside a photo of him holding the golden statue.
Oscar producers David Hill and Reginald Hudlin said, “Chris Rock is truly the MVP of the entertainment industry …. comedian, actor, writer, producer, director, documentarian — he’s done it all. He’s going to be a phenomenal Oscar host!”
Rock hosted the show a decade ago when Clint Eastwood‘s Million Dollar Baby walked away with the Best Picture prize.
His appearance on the 2005 telecast was not without its controversy. He came under fire a month before the show when he said in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, “Come on, it’s a fashion show. No one performs; it’s not like a music show. What straight black man sits there and watches the Oscars? Show me one.”
He then added more fuel to the fire on the night of the show when he insulted actors as varied as Tobey Maguire, Jude Law, and Colin Farrell.
Was his comment with Entertainment Weekly controversial? Sure, I can see where some could take offence to it. However, it’s still funny hearing Chris Rock say it. However, the night he hosted the show back in 2005 it seemed more like a Roast than an actual Oscars Award show. And that does worry me a bit.
Despite all of this, all of that stuff in the past seems to have been forgotten with the praise the Academy is extending to the comedian.
“We share David and Reggie’s excitement in welcoming Chris, whose comedic voice has really defined a generation,” said Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs. “He is certain to bring his amazing array of talents to this year’s show.”
It will be interesting to see if he will be asked to tone down his trademark biting humor for the broadcast, scheduled for February 28, 2016. One thing is for sure, there is no way he could be any worse than the James Franco/Anne Hathaway or Ellen Degeneres………I hope.