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  • “The Diva” Andrea Simakis Talks Oscar Host Possibilities

    [caption id="attachment_4700" align="alignleft" width="158" caption="Andrea "The Diva" Simakis"]Simakis[/caption]

    Andrea "The Diva" Simakis is back to discuss possible Oscar hosts, in this case Tina Fey, in her article Pop Diva: Why not Tina Fey as Oscar host?:

    The Diva was in the midst of writing her column, loosely titled "Now that Eddie Murphy has resigned as host of the Oscars following the ignoble ouster of his immature jerk of a friend as producer, the academy is free to hire a much better master of ceremonies, namely, Tina Fey," when news broke late Thursday that Billy Crystal had been offered the job.

    "Am doing the Oscars so the young woman in the pharmacy will stop asking my name when I pick up my prescriptions," Tweeted Crystal, 63, who has hosted Hollywood's most star-studded night eight times. "Looking forward to the show." Then he downed a heaping spoonful of Metamucil.

    Crystal may be hotly anticipating the moment he takes the podium at the 84th annual Academy Awards, but the Diva isn't.

    Nothing against the diminutive comedian -- loved him as Harry and guffawed at his Borscht-belt turn in "The Princess Bride" -- but the first time he helmed the Oscar broadcast, "Dances With Wolves" won seven gold statuettes.

    Have you caught "Dances" lately? The film doesn't get better with age. (Neither does Kevin Costner's acting. Totem poles look like Stanislavski next to the 1990s heartthrob.)

    Point is, what was once Oscar fodder is now late-night cable filler. The film's sell-by date is long past, kind of like Crystal, who was benched as host after 2004.

    A little background: On Tuesday, Brett Ratner, slated to produce this year's Oscars, "stepped aside amid a storm of criticism over his use of an anti-gay slur," in the delicate language of The New York Times -- and after making what Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Tom Sherak called a series of appalling comments on Howard Stern's satellite-radio show.

    Ratner, the director known for the Oscar-proof "Rush Hour" franchise, said "rehearsal's for fags" when asked to describe his directorial style during a screening of his new movie, "Tower Heist," starring Murphy.

    He apologized, then went on Stern and crassly detailed his sexploits with various starlets, including a delightful anecdote in which the ladykiller admitted he once insisted Lindsay Lohan be checked for STDs before the two had sex.

    Those admissions to the King of All Media, and not the slur alone, reportedly pushed the academy over the edge. (Here's a thought: Why hire a notorious pig to produce the chichi event in the first place?)

    On Wednesday, Murphy walked out behind his beleaguered director, as canny a career move as starring in "The Adventures of Pluto Nash."

    Then again, Murphy, one of Crystal's castmates on "Saturday Night Live" in the Pleistocene era, wasn't the right choice to emcee the telecast that bleeds ratings like a cheerleader in a slasher flick either. If he's not padding his rump as one of the corpulent and flatulent Klumps, he isn't all that charming, a requirement for the gig.

    Instead of using the fortuitous vacancy to lasso a hotter commodity -- say, the aforementioned Ms. "Bossypants" -- the academy dusted off Crystal for the Sunday, Feb. 26, Oscar show.

    (If you're going to go retro, why not just get Hollywood's CGI wizards to digitally insert Bob Hope onstage at the Kodak Theatre? Hope holds the record for hosting the Oscars an astonishing 18 times. Barring that, there is always the exhumation of five-time host Johnny Carson to consider.)

    A veteran of live television, Fey could have harnessed her formidable comedic writing talents and stable of "30 Rock" scribes to bring a fresh, wacky sensibility to the often relentlessly unfunny 3½ hours of television. (The Diva would be happy to offer her emcee services, but alas, that evening she plans to wash her hair in Evian and cut back the cuticles on her talons.)

    In its history, only two women -- Whoopi Goldberg and Ellen DeGeneres -- have hosted the show solo. Of course, that's a slightly better statistic than the number of women who have won an Oscar for best director: one, Kathryn Bigelow, for her film "The Hurt Locker" in 2010.

    If Fey was unavailable, why not go edgy and ring Chelsea Handler? She not only killed when she hosted the MTV Music Awards, she looked fabulous doing it, teasing her hair like Brigitte Bardot on a three-day drunk.

    Despite its advanced age, Oscar night still draws some 40 million viewers in the United States, though it has yet to recapture the more than 57 million it garnered in 1998 thanks to the tidal wave of "Titanic."

    Read more at The Cleveland Plain Dealer

    Filed under: Entertainment, Forest Hill News & Events
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