In what must surely be yet another attempt to bump up its viewership, the organizers of the Academy Awards just picked Jimmy Kimmel to host next year’s Oscars ceremony.
After steadily losing popularity over the past eight years, more or less, Kimmel might actually have an easy job spiking the show’s ratings. That’s thanks in part to Will Smith slapping Chris Rock onstage at last year’s ceremony, which remains legit water cooler fodder for the remaining Americans who actually still work in an office.
Also playing in Jimmy Kimmel’s favor is his previous experience hosting the Oscars ceremony in 2017 and 2018.
In picking Kimmel, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences — which stages the so-called biggest night of the year in Hollywood — indicated they have a sense of humor.
“We’re super thrilled to have Jimmy score his hat trick on this global stage,” executive producers and show-runners Glenn Weiss and Ricky Kirshner said in a statement, according to Yahoo! Finance. “We know he will be funny and ready for anything!”
Kimmel reportedly provided a statement as well, saying, “Being invited to host the Oscars for a third time is either a great honor or a trap. Either way, I am grateful to the academy for asking me so quickly after everyone good said no.”
Jimmy Kimmel and the Oscars: Together Again
One of Kimmel’s most memorable Oscars moments actually came when he railed against the 2018 ceremony’s length while hosting it. (The event lasted almost four hours.)
“This is a really long show,” he quipped, before segueing into a funny bit in which he promised a jet ski to whichever subsequent winner gave the shortest speech.
It’s also safe to assume Kimmel will somehow address the Smith/Rock incident — a fine line, as it left viewers stunned and continues to resonate. He talked about it at length on his TV show shortly after it occurred.
Next year’s Academy Awards ceremony will air on March 12 on ABC. Of course, the network is also not-so-coincidentally home to Kimmel’s weeknight talk show, Jimmy Kimmel Live!