The most thankless job in Hollywood has found its next host. Jimmy Kimmel will host the 2023 Academy Awards, according to Variety. It will be his third time hosting the ceremony, following the 2017 and 2018 ceremonies.
Executive producers and showrunners Ricky Kirshner and Glenn Weiss announced the news Monday morning, sharing, “We’re super thrilled to have Jimmy score his hat trick on this global stage. We know he will be funny and ready for anything.”
“Being invited to host the Oscars for a third time is either a great honor or a trap,” Kimmel wrote in his own statement, per the outlet. “Either way, I am grateful to the Academy for asking me so quickly after everyone good said no.”
Kimmel may be right about the opportunity being, in fact, a trap. Outside of the fact that no one ever seems to be happy with the Oscar host—at least not since Billy Crystal last hosted—Kimmel has his own weird history with award shows. Famously, the late-night host’s first time hosting the ceremony saw one of the most famous flubs in Oscar history, when Warren Beatty announced that La La Land had won the award for Best Picture. It didn’t; Moonlight did. That, however, can hardly be blamed on Kimmel, and the powers that be clearly feel that he handled the debacle well enough to welcome him back (again).
Earlier this year, Kimmel was more directly the subject of minor controversy when he pretended to lay dead on the Emmy stage as Quinta Brunson accepted her Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series award. The moment earned backlash online, but Brunson and Kimmel more or less seemed to make up when she appeared on his show the following week.
All of this considered, the Oscar producers would probably be thrilled to have a controversy as mild as either of the two just mentioned. Of course, everyone involved with the award show is spooked absolutely silly about the prospect of another Slap. For a show obsessed with manufacturing water cooler moments via Amy Schumer descending from the ceiling dressed as Spider-Man, having an honest-to-goodness unscripted moment was apparently a bridge too far (and worse than a 21st-century Roman Polanski standing ovation, at least according to Mia Farrow). The Oscars are about prestige, and hopefully the milquetoast comedy stylings of Jimmy Kimmel can finally bring the show to its beloved, consistently rating-dwindling form.
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