“The Oscars, the glitz, the glamour, the host’s old bad tweets?” the announcer said at the top of Saturday Night Live’s strongest sketch this week. “Whoopsies. The search for a new host begins. Who will risk everything for the chance to gain nothing?”
With Kevin Hart out as host after old homophobic jokes resurfaced, the Academy has just over two months before the 91st annual Oscars to find a replacement. SNL’s audition tapes—mostly an excuse for the cast members and host Matt Damon to show off some pretty impressive impressions—emphasized why no one wants what was once a coveted showbiz gig.
Standouts included Aidy Bryant as Australian comic Hannah Gadsby, Cecily Strong as The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’s title character, and Chris Redd as a controversial Kanye West. “Best actor?” he asked. “What about best human, bro?”
The taped bit also featured the night’s only sketch appearance from Pete Davidson—as Bohemian Rhapsody’s Rami Malek—who earlier in the day posted a troubling message to Instagram. NBC confirmed that he was accounted for at work after NYPD sent an officer to 30 Rock to check on him.
The last audition came from Kate McKinnon’s Ellen DeGeneres. “Hey, I’ll host the Oscars, sure,” she said. “I’ve never done anything controversial in my life, except for being gay. But people like that now, except for the guy who was supposed to host.”
It was a big change from last week’s show when “Weekend Update” co-anchor Michael Che seemed to defend Hart. “Didn’t the Academy nominate Mel Gibson for an award just last year?” he asked before adding, “If Kevin Hart isn’t clean enough to host the Oscars, then no black comic is.”