Oscars to go hostless again, US broadcaster and Academy confirm

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This year’s Oscar ceremony will follow last year’s model and go without a traditional host, according to the ABC broadcast network, which airs the ceremony in the US.

ABC Entertainment head Karey Burke reportedly confirmed the decision to go hostless during the network’s session at this week’s Television Critics Association press tour in Los Angeles (January 8).

The Academy confirmed the announcement on Twitter on Wednesday morning.

The 2019 Oscar show was the first to be staged without a host since 1989, after comedian and actor Kevin Hart pulled out of hosting when controversial past tweets by him resurfaced.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), which controls the Oscar show, opted to go ahead without a host and the result was an increase in TV ratings for the broadcast after a long decline leading to all-time low ratings for the 2018 show. The hostless show drew an average of close to 30m viewers in the US, up 11.5% from the previous year.

The Primetime Emmys show followed suit and went without a host last September, though recent award ceremonies have maintained the traditional format, most recently with Ricky Gervais doing a controversial job at the Golden Globes ceremony.

ABC will broadcast the 2020 Oscar ceremony in the US on February 9, two weeks earlier than usual. The show is being produced by Lynette Howell Taylor and Stephanie Allain.

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