In what could be the greatest turnaround in awards show history, the idea has circulated that Chris Rock may be back to host the Academy Awards next year.
The comedian, 57, previously lead the night of the 88th annual Oscars back in 2016. Although a big night for Rock back then, the “smack heard around the world” from this year’s awards took the cake as his most memorable moment on the awards show stage.
As Rock was presenting an award, he delivered a G.I. Jane joke alluding to Jada Pinkett Smith that resulted in her husband, Best Actor Will Smith, storming on stage and smacking Rock directly in the face.
ABC claimed it is open to having Chris Rock host 2023 Oscars
After such a shocking moment at this year’s awards, ABC’s President of Entertainment Craig Erich made a statement to Deadline that said the network was open to having Rock host next year’s Oscars. He also said that he is expecting next year’s show to be “even better” than this year.
“My assessment of the Oscars was that it was really a successful year for the show. Obviously there was a lot of controversy, which overshadowed a lot of the positive things about the show, but I was really happy with the program,” Erich said. “Even before that very unfortunate moment, the show started off up year over year, and we came back in a big way.”
Will Smith banned from Oscars for 10 years following slap
After the on-stage incident of slapping Chris Rock, Smith himself resigned from the Academy in a personal statement that included, “I betrayed the trust of the Academy. I deprived other nominees and winners of their opportunity to celebrate and be celebrated for their extraordinary work.” He also said that he would accept any and all consequences that would be coming his way due to the incident.
The Academy officially announced that Will Smith will be banned from attending their awards for the next 10 years. As previously reported by Monsters & Critics, the Academy has previously only expelled three people – Harvey Weinstein, Roman Polanski, and Bill Cosby.
The Academy’s president, David Rubin, sent a letter to board members that labeled Smith’s behavior “harmful” and “unacceptable.”
“The 94th Oscars were meant to be a celebration of the many individuals in our community who did incredible work this past year,” the letter stated. “However, those moments were overshadowed by the unacceptable and harmful behavior we saw Mr. Smith exhibit on stage.”
With Will Smith not in attendance and Chris Rock possibly taking the reins at next year’s award, the Oscars may just see the greatest rebound it has ever had in the history of its broadcast.