The Hollywood Film Awards Series: James Corden is the HFA host, but who will be Oscar’s?

London International Boat Show 2014 - James Corden Sunseeker 75 Yacht Unveiling Photocall
With the recent announcement that James Corden was going to be the host of the 19th annual Hollywood Film Awards, I was struck by two notions. One was that it was a perfect reason to have another installment in the Hollywood Film Awards Series that we’ve been doing here, but also that it was an excuse to ponder who the Academy might choose to host the Oscars. Corden is an excellent choice for the Hollywood Film Awards and is a real get (much like Queen Latifah was the last time around for them), so the Academy Awards will have to try hard to top that pick. It’s doable, but the producers for the Oscars will have to really make an effort this time around. In honor of that, I figured I’d help and consider some names that might be worth sniffing around and offering the gig to…

Basically, what I’m going to do today is show you a few different categories that the producers could separate potential host candidates into. Believe me when I say that I don’t have an exhaustive list below for you, but what I have is a grab back that shows some of the possible avenues. So far, it’s anyone’s guess who the powers that be are partial to, but some rumors have thrown about names like Ellen DeGeneres and/or Steve Martin among former hosts, as well as the likes of Steve Carell and Justin Timberlake. I’ve included those names below, but among a handful of others alongside them.

The first grouping that I think is possible consists of former hosts. There’s the aforementioned Ellen DeGeneres and Steve Martin, but you’d have to also put Billy Crystal on that list as well. I’m not sure that this is the best way to go, but it’s the safest way to go. You can also look to Jon Stewart as another possible candidate among this grouping, though it remains to be seen if this is something he’d ever be interested in doing again. If he is, he’d be my pick of this litter, but given the choice, I’d shy away from a returning champion, as it were. There are more interesting choices elsewhere.

Next up is the obvious grouping of comedians/late night hosts, who are always under consideration. This list would include the likes of Louis C.K., Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel, and Amy Schumer. You never know how the sensibility of these performers would mesh with the Oscar telecast writers, so that’s always a risk. Essentially, picking a comedian or a late night talk show host is a high risk/high reward proposition, so it all comes down to how bold the producers are feeling. If they’re especially ballsy, C.K., Colbert, or Schumer could be in the running for sure. I’m not certain that this is the route that ultimately will be taken, but it’s one to consider, without question.

The grouping that I think is most likely to see a host chosen from is the group I call Hollywood players. Essentially, it means actors/celebrities, who used to dominate the shows of yesteryear. Steve Carell, Robert Downey Jr., Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Tom Hanks, and Justin Timberlake (with Carell and Timberlake already having been rumored as potential options) are all names that could be given heavy consideration, if they haven’t already been vetted. You could even look to young Hollywood again and go with Jennifer Lawrence. There’s tons of options here and probably is the best mix of risk/safety, so if I had a guess, I’d say look to an actor or an actress to get the gig. Carell and Timberlake both would work for me, even if they couldn’t be more different.

Finally, keep in mind some out of the box choices. I have no idea who they might be, but I always hope for Kevin Smith, even if I know that’ll never happen. I’d also love to see The Muppets host, but the logistics of that might be too rough. Also, there’s always the option of no host, though I think that’s almost a nonstarter at this point. Basically, I just want someone to come along and shake things up, even though that will probably never happen. A different and unique show is almost always a more enjoyable one, at least to me.

Stay tuned for more from the 19th annual Hollywood Film Awards, now to be hosted by James Corden!

About Joey Magidson

A graduate of Stony Brook University (where he studied Cinema and Cultural Studies), resides in Brooklyn, New York. He contributes to several other film-related websites and is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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