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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 16 January 2019

Oscars 2019 set to go host free? Here's who we'd like to see in the job 

For starters, we think it should be a woman...

It looks like hosting the 2019 Oscars is set to be a group effort, rather than a one-man show, as the Academy is yet to settle on someone to replace Kevin Hart, after he pulled out of the gig.

It being a "one-man show" is clearly a key criteria from the past, as the awards ceremony has a long history of almost exclusively male hosts.

In the 90 years that the Academy Awards has run for, there has only been a total of 17 female hosts, as opposed to 60 different men, many of which have taken on hosting duties multiple times.

We have put a lot of thought into our ideal (female) hosting line up in the gallery above. With comedians like Amy Poehler, Maya Rudolph and Ellen DeGeneres getting almost a unanimous seal of approval from The National staff members we polled. Click through above to see who else got a nod from the team.

Women in the hosting position

Agnes Moorehead was the first female to present the show, co-hosting with Dick Powell in 1947. Whoopi Goldberg was the first woman to host the show solo, doing so in 1993, 1995, 1998 and 2001.

The only other woman to present the show solo has been Ellen DeGeneres, who has fronted the Oscars twice, in both 2006 and 2013.

Ellen DeGeneres last hosted the show in 2016, where she took this now-iconic selfie. Instagram
Ellen DeGeneres last hosted the show in 2016, where she took this now-iconic selfie. Instagram

The most regular Oscars host was the late British comedian Bob Hope, who presented 19 ceremonies in his time. Billy Crystal comes in second, as the actor has hosted nine ceremonies to date.

This year's host

It's been speculated that Goldberg has thrown her name into the ring again, with insiders saying she would return for a sixth time.

"Everyone is hoping they’ll do a series of presenters and have no formal host," a source told Page Six, adding: "Whoopi really is game to do it though."

In typical Goldberg fashion, she has been outspoken about the idea of a host-free show. "If you want to go hostless, that’s your prerogative. I think it’s a dumb idea," the 63-year-old said on The View. "People need someone to take them through things. I think it needs to be somebody who loves the films. Now, I realise I may not be anybody’s first choice... I’m also problematic!"

Kevin Hart: 'I’m not hosting the Oscars this year'

Comedian Kevin Hart was originally lined up to present the February 24 awards show, but pulled out in December following an outcry over homophobic tweets, posted between 2009 and 2011.

The Oscars are set to go host-free as Kevin Hart maintains that he will not front the February 2019 awards show. AFP
The Oscars are set to go host-free as Kevin Hart maintains that he will not front the February 2019 awards show. AFP

There was further confusion last week, when the American comedian told chat show host, Ellen DeGeneres that he would “reconsider” his decision to step down, when appearing on her chat show on January 5.

During the conversation, DeGeneres told Hart that she had “called the Academy today because I really want you to host the Oscars”.

She added: “You have apologised. You're apologising again right now. You've done it. Don't let these people win.”

However, Hart has held his ground.

“I’m not hosting the Oscars this year,” said Hart. And when asked if he would host in the future he said: “It’s hard to predict what can happen.”

Not the first time the show has forgone a host

This won’t be the first time the awards show has gone host-free.

Five of the past 90 Academy Awards have been presented by a series of stars, rather than one host, most recently in 1988.

Variety has speculated that the show will “focus on starry skits and play up a high-profile year for music in film, thanks to likely nominees Lady Gaga, Dolly Parton, and Kendrick Lamar”.

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Read more:

Kevin Hart steps down as Oscars host

Golden Globe-winning writer deletes Twitter after anti-Muslim tweet resurfaces

Nadine Labaki's 'Capernaum' nominated for a Bafta

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Updated: January 10, 2019 03:33 PM

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