The Oscars will officially have no host for its 2019 telecast.
New ABC Entertainment president Karey Burke confirmed Tuesday that the 2019 Academy Awards will be held without a host for the first time in decades.
Burke talked about the long-rumored decision, following the Kevin Hart controversy and backlash in December, during the executive session at the Television Critics Association press tour.
"Ironically, the lack of clarity surrounding the Oscars has kept the Oscars really in the conversation and the mystery has been compelling. People really care," Burke told reporters. "It's fascinating. We're going to see a big turnout for this because these are big, popular movies who are being nominated. People really care to see who is going to win."
Burke added during the panel that she believed producers made a wise choice when they decided to go without a host for the awards ceremony, according to Entertainment Tonight.
"There wasn't messiness beyond the Kevin Hart situation. After that, it was pretty clear that we were going to stay the course. There was an idea that they were going to have the presenters just host the Oscars," she added. "We all got on board with that. The main goal, which I was told, was the Academy promised ABC last year after a very lengthy telecast to keep the show to three hours. Producers wisely decided to not have a host and to go back to having the presenters and movies be the stars, and that be the best way to keep the show at a brisk three hours."
The exec did not go into details on the actual ceremony, but shared that she and producers plan to meet later this week to discuss specifics on the telecast. However, she did tease that the opening number will be "exciting."
The rumors of a hostless Oscars ceremony first began after Kevin Hart stepped down as the host back in Decembers, just days after he accepted the gig due to a controversy with old tweets.
"So I just got a call from the Academy, and that call basically said, 'Kevin, apologize for your tweets of old. Or we're gonna have to move and find another host.' Talking about the tweets from 2009, 2010," Hart said in an Instagram video. "I chose to pass. I passed on the apology."
"This is not the first time this has come up, I've addressed it, I've spoken on it," he continued. "I've said where the rights and wrongs were. I've said who I am now versus who I was then. I've done it. I've done it! I'm not gonna continue to go back and tap into the days of old, when I've moved on, and I'm in a completely different space in my life."
Hours after his first statement, the Jumanji star ended up apologizing to the LGBT community, also announcing he would be stepping down from hosting duties.
"I have made the choice to step down from hosting this year's Oscars," Hart tweeted. "This is because I do not want to be a distraction on a night that should be celebrated by so many amazing talented artists. I sincerely apologize to the LGBTQ community for my insensitive words from my past."1comments
"I'm sorry that I hurt people," he continued in a following tweet. "I am evolving and want to continue to do so. My goal is to bring people together not tear us apart. Much love & appreciation to the Academy. I hope we can meet again."
Will you be tuning in for the Oscars? The awards ceremony will air live on Sunday, Feb. 27 on ABC.