Producer Donna Gigliotti Brags About Oscars Success: “I Always Believed the Show Could Work Without a Host”

Kevin Harts did not host the 2019 Oscars and the world did not come to an end.

Speaking during the first Academy Awards broadcast, producer Donna Gigliotti bragged about the success of the 91st Oscars, saying, “The thing ran like clockwork. As far as I can determine, I think it did all the things I was hoping for.”

Asked how grueling the preparations must have been, she said, “’Grueling’ is your word, not mine. I’ve said this over and over again. It was one of the most exhilarating professional experiences I have had in a very long time. I am not deranged. I had a great time doing it.”

About moving on without Kevin Hart, she said, “Nobody really wants to believe me when I say this, but it was in mid-October — I can prove this because I had discussions with Glenn, and I take very good notes as well — I was talking about going host-less. If you are charged with producing a show that runs faster than it has in the past, and you simply go and look at the math of how the show works, It occurred to me, the host takes a lot of time, and if you’re going to produce a show that’s fairly brisk, maybe one of the things that you do is you take out the host. I always believed the show could work without a host.”

About the new concept she was developing, she said, “You can start off with an idea. The concept was how movies connect us with one another. And I was blessed with looking at the past year in film where you had films like Black PantherBlacKkKlansmanBohemian RhapsodyA Star Is Born — big movies that had meaning to audiences all over the world. So as simple-minded as that might sound, that was the idea: how movies connect us from one another. Then from that I went to the idea, let’s bring in presenters who are outside the world of film. So we got Serena Williams, Tom Morello, Trevor Noah, Rep. John Lewis. But you can only have that idea, and then you have to sit and wait until the nominations come out before you can actually go into action. So you have a very short window to actually put the show together. There is a lot of thinking that goes on before that, and then the nominations come out and, boom, you’re in, you have to move like the speed of light.”

And she said a lot more.

Catch her broadcast here.

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