Kevin Hart might still have some friends in charge of organizing the Academy Awards, as sources say there are some who would still be open to him hosting the 2019 awards ceremony.
Following his first interview on the subject on The Ellen DeGeneres Show — where Hart said he'd consider acting as host if he was asked — leadership at the Academy of Motion Pictures and Sciences and ABC, the network that shows the awards ceremony, are reportedly open to Hart resuming his role as emcee if he expresses his interest.
A source told Variety that the message from Hart could come from a spokesperson or on social media, where he actively updates fans and followers mostly on Twitter and Instagram.
The unconfirmed reports follow the controversy that ignited after the Academy announced in early December that Hart would serve as host for the 2019 show, set to air on Feb. 27. The announcement was met by major backlash from the LGBT community, who unearthed a series of homophobic remarks the comedian had made on social media in the past.
The comedian was initially dismissive of the controversy, saying he had preciously addressed the remarks and refusing to apologize again. he then offered a written apology after announcing he had decided to step down from the gig.
Since then, producers of the awards show have reportedly struggled to find a replacement.
Another source told the outlet that The Academy hoped Hart would respond to the controversy with a meaningful discussion, but his initial response was disappointing. leading them to deliver the ultimatum — either he apologized for his tweets or he would be let go.
It is not clear if Hart's apologies during the Ellen taping are enough, and the interview was been met with serious criticism from fans after the fact. The Jumanji 2 actor is reportedly still the top choice for the job, though producers are said to be working hard on continuing the show without him.
Despite his comments on Ellen, Hart also told Variety in an interview that he would not host the gig if he were asked to do so again, and that the only way he'll get onstage at the Oscars would be if he won.
"When I go on that stage, it will be because I've somehow figured out a way to win the Oscar," Hart said. "Somehow I'll get to the stage but it's not going to be in this way because it just comes with such a weird cloud at this point."
The Oscars are set to air Sunday, Feb. 27 on ABC.