A host is a host? Can this really be true? The Academy Awards have proven that this isn’t true. Some have what it takes and others fall flat. Hosting the Oscar is the highest honor as a host. Some people naturally fit this position and are respected and others fail and are never invited back. Below is a discussion of five past Oscar Hosts.
Bob Hope is a natural choice and the Oscar Host icon. He is a charismatic man and radiates fun from whatever venue he is performing from. He was the host of The Academy Awards 17 times from 1940-1978. While he was host wonderful movies such as Gone With the Wind, Greatest Show on Earth, The Bridge over the River Kwai, Gigi, Ben-Hur ,West Side Story, My Fair Lady, and The Sound of Music won the best picture awards.
Johnny Carson is another natural choice. He was the host of The Tonight Show for a number of years and built a successful following from his performances on that show. He brought his natural humor and quick wit to The Academy Awards. He hosted The Academy Awards five times during which such movies as, Kramer vs. Kramer, Chariots of Fire,The Deer Hunter, and Ordinary People won best picture awards.
Johnny Carson was a late night television show host and in 1995 another late night television show host was chosen to the host of The Academy Awards, his name was David Letterman. He was only the host for one year. The most memorable thing that he contributed to the night was his repeated introduction of Uma Thurman to Oprah Winfrey and then introducing them both to Keanu Reeves. However, this was the year that Forrest Gump won best picture award which makes the year memorable on its own rite.
Chris Rock is a comedian turned actor. He is quite funny but is typically in a not meant for prime time kind of way. He hosted The Academy Awards in 2005. This year Million Dollar Baby won the best picture award. The most memorable event of the night though is when Jamie Foxx won the Best Actor Role and that Morgan Freeman won the Best Supporting Role. Jamie Foxx’s emotional acceptance speech stole the show from Chris Rock.
Billy Crystal is Mr. Academy Awards. Hosting The Academy Awards is the role that he was born to play. His big smile lights up the stage and his nasally voice makes everyone laugh just the right amount. He balances the right amount of humor with a professional and serious award show presentation every time. He has hosted The Academy Awards eight times between 1990-2004. During his tenure movies such as, Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, American Beauty, Titanic, The English Patient, Dances with Wolves, and Driving Miss Daisy won the Best Picture award.
It seems like it would be natural for a talk show host to be a good fit for the host of The Academy Awards. However, we have seen that is not always the case. Imagine Jerry Springer or Maury Povich hosting the show. The typical audience is used to shouting “Jerry! Jerry! Jerry! Jerry!” or screaming because Maury has just announced that “You are not the father.” This would not work for The Academy Awards. It is surprising that Dick Clark wasn’t ever the host of The Academy Awards. The best choice for future host of The Academy Awards is Ryan Seacrest. He is very appealing to all age groups and is funny and charming. He would make the perfect host for The Academy Awards.