According to Variety, this year’s Academy Awards ceremony will air without a main host after Kevin Hart confirmed he has ruled out returning. It will be the first time that this has happened since 1989.
Hart, who stepped back from the role following criticism of a series of homophobic tweets written between 2009 and 2011, was initially in line to present the show, taking over from Jimmy Kimmel who hosted the past two years.
There was growing discussion that Hart might return despite the backlash, after Ellen DeGeneres proposed the idea in an interview with Hart. However, he has since ended the speculation, telling Good Morning America on Wednesday: “I’m not hosting the Oscars this year”.
Rather than rushing to find a suitable new host, The Academy have decided to have a series of presenters each dealing with a different part or aspect of the ceremony. Variety reports that these ideas will take the shape of celebrity skits, centred around the theme of music in the movies.
The Oscars will take place slightly earlier than usual this year on the 24th February 2019.
Watch a video of Kevin Hart’s interview with Good Morning America below: