Chris Rock is in “serious talks” to host the 2016 Oscars, Variety reports.
After a sharp 16 per cent drop in viewership for the 2015 telecast, the Academy has turned to a tried-and-true veteran in hopes of boosting ratings. Rock previously hosted the 2005 awards and was generally well-received.
In the 88 years that the Academy Awards has existed, only five people of colour have been hosts: Sammy Davis Jr. (’72 and ’75), Richard Pryor (’77 and ’83), Diana Ross (’74), Whoopi Goldberg (’94, ’96, ’99, 2002) and Chris Rock. Goldberg and Rock were the only solo hosts, the rest acted only as co-hosts.
In recent news, the Academy and film industry have been under fire for whitewashing roles, underrepresenting people of colour and failing to recognize the achievements of minority groups–less than 20 black actors and actresses have won in the four major acting categories.
The 2016 Oscars will air on Feb. 28, 2016.
You can check out Chris Rock’s opening monologue from the 2005 show.