February 21, 2010

Was Sacha Baron Cohen the first choice to host the Oscars?

Apparently so, according to this from Cinema Blend:

In a few weeks Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin will take the stage in Hollywood to host the 2010 Academy Awards. But they weren’t the first choice of the show’s producers. Adam Shankman and Bill Mechanic were looking to shake things up this year, in a big way, a much bigger way than simply having two hosts. They wanted Sacha Baron Cohen.

Talking to Contact Music Shankman reveals, “The Academy swatted it (idea) down. They thought it was too big of a wild card.” They were probably right. Though the ceremony would have grabbed headlines, Cohen’s comedy is as divisive as it is funny. In the end, whatever he brought to the ceremony would have ended up alienating half the audience and would definitely have been a huge distraction from what the point of the whole thing is supposed to be: recognizing great work in great movies.

A Sacha Baron Cohen hosted Oscar ceremony would, by nature, be all about Sacha Baron Cohen. It wouldn’t have been boring, but it wouldn’t have been the Oscars either.



  1. Could not agree more. Sacha is very hit and miss and his comedy is based in painful moments. The Globes took a similar (but smaller) risk with Ricky Gervais in the host role and for the most part it was just a bit too painful. The Oscars needs the light-hearted comedy of Baldwin/Martin. They can still make fun but nobody crosses the line, which Cohen would most certainly do.

  2. Indeed. I like "different" hosts, but the show's not about them, so it doesn't make much of a difference in the end.