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With the Motion Picture Academy scrambling for a new host of the Oscars’ February telecast, Philadelphia Flyers fans on Twitter are asking, why not Gritty?
Less than 48 hours after accepting the Oscars hosting gig, Kevin Hart dropped out after old homophobic tweets from him surfaced on the internet. That put the Academy in quite a pickle.
Since Gritty’s debut earlier this year, the new mascot for the Philadelphia Flyers has been embraced as an internet meme and American treasure despite — or perhaps because of — his googly eyes and creepy, hairy appearance. Even as the Flyers languish near the bottom of the NHL Eastern Conference standings, Gritty has made this season a memorable one for fans with his antics, including dumping a boy who wanted to fight him on the ice into the penalty box.
Gritty hosting the Oscars would just be Gritty trashing the stage with a sledgehammer and throwing all the envelopes with the winners into the air and then running away with all the statues and I am HERE FOR IT
— Caroline McCarthy (@caro) December 9, 2018
And with ratings for the Academy Awards dropping and reports that there are very few Hollywood stars interested in hosting, Philly sees an opportunity to make Oscar night a little less gold and a little more orange.
It’s hard to imagine who would want to jump in and take this often thankless job. Many film critics and Oscars fans online have thrown out suggestions, bur here are some of the tweets in support of Gritty.
Gritty for Oscars Host pic.twitter.com/xd9u5htMdY
— nikki mccann ramírez (@NikkiMcR) December 7, 2018
Let Gritty host the Oscars, you cowards.
— Andy (@NoelJnks) December 8, 2018
It’s funny that we joke about other potential Oscar hosts like any of them could defeat Gritty.
— Kibblesmith (@kibblesmith) December 7, 2018
Gritty as the Oscar host.
It is a totally silent 3 and a half hour. At the end he beheads the Pittsburg Penguin’s Mascot.
Rampage wins best picture.
— Michael Curran (@Mikel_Curran) December 4, 2018
people who should host the oscars:
-d’arcy carden and ted danson
-the dog from widows
-the entire cast of ocean’s 8, trading off thru the night
-the ghost of carrie fisher
-sandra oh and andy samburg
-the fab 5 but ONLY if antoni is wearing a little life t-shirt
— zoe owens ???????? (@punkrockzo) December 7, 2018
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The problem with “The Marriage,” a well-meaning but structurally lopsided first feature from Yugoslavian director Blerta Zeqiri, is that the marriage plot of the title is so much less interesting than the love plot at its core.
This is a film that takes place in a cold, snowy climate, and the main male character Bekim (Alban Ukaj) and his fiancée Anita (Adriana Matoshi) are bundled up in the first scene as they wait outside a center for missing persons. (Anita’s parents have been missing for over 15 years.) When Bekim and Anita enter the center, we see people placing long-stemmed flowers down on numbered segments that carry the found bones of their loved ones.
The Kosovo War of the late 1990s hangs over this narrative, because any story set in Yugoslavia has to deal with it in some way. But the character of Anita in “The Marriage” does not seem affected in any way by the trauma of that war or the loss of her parents. She is somewhat bland and superficial and an easy laugher, and we spend an inordinate amount of time with her as she picks out her wedding dress.
We also spend a long time with Anita as she hangs out with Bekim and his old friend Nol (Genc Salihu) at the bar that Bekim runs. Nol went to live in Paris and he has become a musician of some renown, and he keeps hinting that he is in love and that it is a “Romeo and Juliet” sort of situation. “Is Juliet a Serb?” Anita asks, in her slightly ditzy way. She tells a long joke about a copulating couple that either loses something in the subtitle translation or is supposed to be aimless and bad.
This scene in the bar is very flat, as is a flashback scene where we see Anita hanging out with her female friends and meeting Bekim for the first time. (Apparently all of her former boyfriends have been “jug-eared” and so her girlfriends think that Bekim is just right for her.) Bekim and Anita arm-wrestle on this first meeting, which is not generally the sort of thing men do with women they are attracted to. But Anita remains eternally clueless here.
Back in the present, Bekim turns down two guys who want to throw a party at his bar for “the LGBT community,” and Ukaj makes certain that we see how much of Bekim’s anger is based on repression and a feeling of helplessness. Up until this point, Anita has been an innocuous character, but she edges her way into very unsympathetic territory when she sends Bekim a text message of a pregnancy test that she downloaded from the Internet just to scare him.
“The Marriage” suddenly comes to life in the present-day scene where Bekim makes love to Nol after Nol is gay-bashed. (The thugs who beat Nol up say they must “exterminate” him, and they talk about Hitler.) When Bekim takes Nol home from the police station after this assault, they immediately have to go to bed together. The beautiful thing here is that Nol has to be treated very gently at first because of the wounds on his back, but once they get going it seems as if the physical damage Nol has suffered disappears for him because he loves having sex with Bekim so much.
There is a super-charged flashback to when Bekim and Nol first knew each other during the war, when Nol was a tenant in a house run by Bekim’s mother. We see them singing “They Can’t Take That Away from Me” together, and Bekim is like a totally different person here: wearing an ornate red shirt, happy and relaxed, and even doing a loving imitation of Louis Armstrong. Later that night, Bekim and Nol laugh about the fact that the war has given them a cover for their romance, and they would like the war to continue so that they can go on loving each other.
In these two scenes, where Ukaj and Salihu display a great deal of chemistry, it becomes clear that “The Marriage” should have been about the love between Bekim and Nol in wartime followed by a brief coda where Bekim forces himself to get married. Nothing having to do with either Anita or the marriage itself is as compelling as the love affair between these two men.
Good news, Kevin Hart; Snoop Dogg is in your corner.
Rapper and marijuana enthusiast Snoop Dogg fired up his Instagram account to deliver a message to Hart on Friday, a day after Hart exited as the next host of the Oscars, due to the uproar over resurfaced, anti-gay tweets that Hart had written.
In a smoky video, the “Doggystyle” rapper suggested that Hart “smoke a blunt” and tell the Academy to “suck a d— or die tryin’.”
“Hey Kev, don’t trip. It ain’t our kind of s—, no way,” the rapper said, between puffs.
“Yeah, right. Come do the BET Awards … or Soul Train. They don’t care,” the rapper continued. “You’re a comedian, cracking jokes.”
Snoop Dogg also made it clear, presumably as a preemptive move, that he wouldn’t be available to take Hart’s place as Oscars host.
“Really? You all want me to host it now? Nah, I don’t think so,” the rapper said. “I got s— to do, and I got way more customers before I get to you.”
The puff-happy pep talk continued, “Kevin Hart, smoke a blunt. Tell the Academy to suck a d— or die tryin.’ F— ‘em.”
The rapper concluded with a dig at another awards ceremony, declaring, “And f— the Grammys, too.”
Hart announced that he was exiting as Oscars host, just two days after he was announced for the gig, on Thursday, saying he did “not want to be a distraction” and adding, “I sincerely apologize to the LGBTQ community for my insensitive words from my past.”
“I have made the choice to step down from hosting this year’s Oscar’s [sic]….this is because I do not want to be a distraction on a night that should be celebrated by so many amazing talented artists,” Hart said on Twitter. “I sincerely apologize to the LGBTQ community for my insensitive words from my past.”
“I’m sorry that I hurt people,” he continued. “I am evolving and want to continue to do so. My goal is to bring people together not tear us apart. Much love & appreciation to the Academy. I hope we can meet again.”
Uproar erupted Wednesday after several old tweets and an old stand-up routine containing homophobic content were resurfaced following the announcement Hart would host next year’s event.
Hart deleted the tweets on Wednesday.
In an Instagram video Wednesday, Hart told his followers: “I swear man, our world is becoming beyond crazy. I’m not going to let the craziness frustrate me.”
“I’m almost 40 years old, if you don’t believe people change, grow evolve as the get older, I don’t know what to tell you,” he said defiantly.
Watch Snoop Dogg add some smoke to the fire below.
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A post shared by snoopdogg (@snoopdogg) on
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Short of getting a reliable former host like Billy Crystal, Ellen DeGeneres or Jimmy Kimmel, many film critics and Oscars fans online have thrown out suggestions, which includes Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, who have hosted the Golden Globes to great success for several years in a row. Key & Peele, were also a popular suggestion. Hannah Gadsby is another name that has popped up as well.
Many of the stars who may be at the ceremony have voiced their nominees as well. Actress Busy Philipps tweeted out her wish list of Oscars hosts directly to the Academy. She named Issa Rae, Sarah Silverman, Ali Wong, Samantha Bee, Robin Thede, Aisha Tyler, “OR ANY OTHER WOMAN WORKING IN HOLLYWOOD RIGHT NOW WHO WANTS TO” as possible selections. Philipps also mentioned that she would be more than willing to host as well.
“Melissa McCarthy should so obviously be the Oscars host I’m irritated even having to say it,” comedian Michael Ian Black tweeted, though McCarthy could be a nominee for her work in “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”
Several critics nominated Wanda Sykes to host, though she has some ideas of her own. “I think Siri and Alexa should host the Oscars,” the comedian tweeted.
“Let @betoORourke host the Oscars. We all like him and it’ll be a real test to see if he can handle an impossible job in front of the world,” tweeted Billy Eichner. A long shot, but okay. Eichner himself wouldn’t be too bad.
Stephen King thinks Patton Oswalt is a good fit for the job. “Simpsons” showrunner Al Jean thinks Kathy Griffin would be a great fit. Bradley Whitford recommended Lin-Manuel Miranda, a Golden Globe-nominee for “Mary Poppins Returns.”
Even Ricky Gervais is willing to host. He promises he won’t offend anyone this time.
And if none of those names get the Academy’s attention, you can always nominate yourself.
See some of Hollywood’s reactions below:
— Busy Philipps (@BusyPhilipps) December 7, 2018
Let @BetoORourke host the Oscars. We all like him and it’ll be a real test to see if he can handle an impossible job in front of the world!
— billy eichner (@billyeichner) December 7, 2018
I will not rest until the Oscars are hosted by the cast of Love Simon, the ghost of Harvey Milk and the entire executive board of Planned Parenthood.
— billy eichner (@billyeichner) December 7, 2018
If Hannah Gadsby hosted the Oscars, I might actually watch. In part because I’d hope she’d deliver something like this. But she won’t be asked, because the most powerful egos in that room are — for the most part — too defensive & thin-skinned https://t.co/0bWisjyrRb
— Mo Ryan (@moryan) December 7, 2018
Melissa McCarthy should so obviously be the Oscars host that I’m irritated having to even say it.
— Michael Ian Black (@michaelianblack) December 7, 2018
I think Siri and Alexa should host the Oscars.
— Wanda Sykes (@iamwandasykes) December 7, 2018
Please let me host the Oscars since that could win me an Emmy next year
— Megan Amram (@meganamram) December 7, 2018
@Lin_Manuel needs to host the Oscars. Tommy Kail needs to direct. They’re really good at the show business. And they’re joyous and kind.
— Bradley Whitford (@WhitfordBradley) December 7, 2018
Hey, Oscar, two words for ya: PATTON OSWALT. He’a funny,sharp-tongued, and he knows film.
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) December 7, 2018
@kathygriffin for Oscar host!
— Al Jean (@AlJean) December 7, 2018
— mariko tamaki (@marikotamaki) December 7, 2018
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