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Oscars: Regina Hall, Amy Schumer, Wanda Sykes to Host as Academy Hails #FanFavorites

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Regina Hall, Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes have been tapped to host the Oscars this year, while the Academy also announced it will honor a single “fan favorite” film, as voted on by the good people of Twitter. Yikes!

These are some head-scratching decisions, to say the least. For starters, while I like Hall, Schumer and Sykes as comic performers, none of them will move the ratings needle a single iota, which is a problem considering the fact that the Oscars are on life support. This year is a critical time for the show, which is coming off an all-time ratings low in 2021.

According to Variety, a “laundry list of top talent” met with producer Will Packer over the past few weeks, including Jon Hamm, who pulled out of discussions over the weekend. It’s unclear why, but I can’t imagine that Hamm or his reps saw much upside in hosting what is sure to be another low-rated broadcast.

I wonder, if Spider-Man: No Way Home had been nominated for Best Picture, would A-listers have jumped at the chance to host the Oscars, knowing the ratings would almost surely rise with a blockbuster nominee in the Best Picture lineup? I guess we’ll never know…

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Image via American International Pictures

What I do know is that Hall, Schumer and Sykes don’t feel like buzzy, appointment television to me — and I watched all three seasons of Hall’s Showtime series Black Monday. How many folks can say that? Amy Schumer hosting the Oscars might’ve been cool, like, six years ago, but that moment has passed.

That the Academy and Packer couldn’t convince an actual A-lister to take the plunge and host one-third of the show is pretty embarrassing if you ask me, and a clear sign of how Hollywood views the Oscar telecast these days — like that relative you hate hugging once a year at Christmas, but you have to do it.

Meanwhile, AMPAS also announced it will honor a “fan favorite” movie during this year’s ceremony, which is a slap in the face to every nominee whose speech will be cut short when the music starts to play them off to make time for this farce. You can either submit your picks (up to 20 times a day! why?) at OscarsFanFavorite.com (I’m not even going to link to it) or tweet your picks with the hashtags #OscarsFanFavorite and #Sweepstakes, and be entered for a chance to win a trip to the Oscars… albeit in 2023.

Sorry, the Academy can’t take the risk of an unvaccinated sweepstakes winner attending the show this year. Oh, wait…

So yeah, between this “fan favorite” thing — what if fans honor the new Woody Allen movie instead of Spider-Man, the latter of which is obviously the Academy’s hoped-for winner with this social media concession — and selecting three hosts who can’t really open a movie right now, it has not been a good day for the Oscars. Let’s just hope these moves don’t prove to be the final nail in the show’s coffin.

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