When growing up in me home with Mum, Dad, sister and brother television took up a lot of my time. I didn’t go to the movies regularly so everything I learnt film wise was from the films on the television. Unsurprisingly I picked up a lot of what made for entertaining television and of everything I saw that which most intrigued me was the role of a host. Often underrated and never considered that big a deal in showbiz the role of a host is actually crucial to the success of the programme. The ability to maintain the attention of the audience and be the link-person from one thing to the next, being noticeable enough to keep people interested without dominating the entire show. That level of charisma and humour, personal charm and a quick wit I was taken with from the start.
Of all the things to host, the Academy Awards must be one of the most daunting gigs. A telecast with so many awards, featuring so many big wigs in the entertainment world, viewed by so many around the world – this is a big deal. To host it competently and confidently is a feat in itself. To be so good at it that you’re invited back on multiple occasions is a sign of how skilled you are at the art of being a host. That’s why this video of one great host paying tribute to another great host is a big deal to me. It shows what a skill it is to pull it off, and the efforts of other guest hosts have shown just how difficult it can be to do the job well.
Apparently Eddie Murphy is down to be hosting next year’s affair. That should be interesting – and it’s probably a one-off for him – but he will have to go some way to top the consummate greatness of the great hosts Bob Hope and Billy Crystal.