ABC Entertainment President Karey Burke said today that this year’s Academy Awards ceremony, set to air Feb. 9, will go without a host, repeating the strategy that worked last year.
The AP reports that Burke said the broadcast will focus on “huge entertainment value, big musical numbers, big comedy and star power.”
The report notes that last year’s ceremony drew 29.6 million viewers, making it the second-smalles audience in Oscars history but still a 12% increase over 2018. The bump ended a four-year slide in viewership for the Oscars.
The 2019 ceremony went without a host after Kevin Hart, who was originally slated to host, dropped out amid a controversy over his anti-gay tweets from a decade ago.
Burke is quoted saying at a TV critics meeting: “We expect that we’re going to have a very commercial set of nominations, and a number of elements have come together that convinced us we’ll have a very entertaining show.”
Nominations will be announced Monday.
“Last year’s Emmy Awards also went without a host. ABC is televising this year’s ceremony on Sept. 20, and Burke was asked if she had any idea who might preside,” the AP adds. “’Baby Yoda,’ she joked, referring to the infant version of the ‘Star Wars’ character that became an instant sensation on Disney Plus’ ‘The Mandalorian.’”