“The Future Of Award Shows” Or An Elaborate Funeral? Late-Night Hosts Give Their Thoughts On 2021 Oscars

One night after the Oscars, late night hosts Trevor Noah, Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Kimmel chimed in with their thoughts on 2021’s unconventional ceremony, offering mixed perspectives.

By far the most kind to the award show was Noah, who said that the Oscars “pulled off a lot of cool moments,” despite the shake-up of a global pandemic.

“I mean, we got to see an awards show in a train station, right?” The Daily Show host noted, referencing the Union Station venue which allowed the show to go on safely. “We saw Regina King get her steps in, and we even got to see Glenn Close audition to be in Cardi B’s next video.”

As Noah mentioned, the 93rd annual Academy Awards also saw a lot of history being made. While Nomadland’s Chloé Zhao became the first woman of color to win Best Director, and Minari‘s Yuh-jung Youn became the first Korean person to win in an acting category, his friend Daniel Kaluuya became “the first person to get an Oscar and a beatdown from his momma on the same night,” Noah joked.

He then cut to a clip of Kaluuya talking about celebrating life, and his gratitude that his parents once had sex, so that he could live. “Ah, ah, ah…Did this guy just say ‘sex’ in front of his African mother? Yo, let me tell you something. Forget saying, ‘My parents had sex.’ Just to say sex in front of African parents will be instantly rewarded by an ass whooping of monumental proportions,” he joked. “In fact, I’m sure the only reason she didn’t whip Daniel’s ass right there was just because there were too many white people in attendance.”

In any case, Kaluuya’s comments did reflect an enjoyable sense of intimacy among those at the ceremony. “If you ask me, I think this is the future of award shows,” said Noah. “Forget agents, and managers, and the crowd…I want to see Brad Pitt’s dad holding up his embarrassing baby photos in the bathtub.”

Like Noah, Colbert couldn’t help but touch on Kaluuya’s sex comment. “Daniel, you don’t bring up your parents’ sex life in your Oscars acceptance speech,” he said on The Late Show. “You dramatize it in a two-hour movie, so you can win your second Oscar.”

Colbert also touched on the night’s historic achievements. But for him, the highlight was seeing his own bandleader and musical director, Jon Batiste, win the Oscar for Best Original Score. Batiste shared the Oscar for Disney/Pixar’s Soul with composers Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross.

“What an amazing achievement,” the host said, “especially considering for some of us, the greatest accomplishment of the last year was washing our sweatpants once a month.”

From Colbert’s perspective, the rest of the “scaled-down” ceremony proved to be “lesser Oscar news.”

“It harkened back to the Oscars’ glamorous roots,” he deadpanned, “when Charlie Chaplin accepted his Oscar from a drifter at the bus depot.”

Firing the most shots at the Oscars was Kimmel, who hosted the show in 2017 and 2018. On tonight’s episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Kimmel opened his monologue with talk of rapper DMX’s memorial service.

“Speaking of elaborate funerals,” he pivoted, “did you watch the Oscars last night? Not that many people did.”

As Kimmel noted, the ratings for the ceremony “plummeted” from 23 million last year to less than 10 million this time around. “How can something so woke put so many people to sleep?” he wondered.

Certainly, the host said, the producers of the Oscars tried to mix things up, in a year without parallel. “This was the Oscars that finally answered the question, ‘What happens when you don’t cut off the acceptance speeches?’” he continued. “Turns out, they go on for a very long time.”

Later, Kimmel turned to the biggest surprise of the evening, which saw the late Chadwick Boseman lose out on Best Actor. “Everyone thought that would go to [him]. They even saved the category for the end of the show, assuming it would be a big, emotional moment to wrap it up,” Kimmel said. “But instead of Chadwick Boseman, Anthony Hopkins won Best Actor for playing a man with dementia in The Father—and he was so committed to his role, he forgot to show up for the Oscars.”

Reportedly, Kimmel said, at the moment that Hopkins won his second Oscar, the actor was already asleep. “Which is not a great sign for network television,” he deadpanned, “when they say, ‘Hey, Anthony, you might win tonight,’ and he’s like, ‘I’ll watch it on YouTube tomorrow.’”

In keeping with tradition, Kimmel wrapped up his Oscars segment with red carpet interviews from the event, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel Live!‘s own Guillermo Rodriguez, in which he chugs invisible tequila shots with stars including Paul Raci, Riz Ahmed and Viola Davis.

Kimmel and Colbert’s Oscar talk segments can be viewed below. Check out Noah’s by clicking above.


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