Ellen DeGeneres faces backlash after throwing her support behind Kevin Hart, who is said to be reconsidering his decision to step down as Oscars host last month.
The presenter has called for the comedian to be reinstated after interviewing him, which will apparently show him addressing controversial homophobic remarks he has made over the years, that resurfaced following his appointment.
She added: “We want him to host. Whatever we can do, we want him to host.”
DeGeneres's interview with Hart will be broadcast on tonight's episode of Ellen (4 January). Promoting the chat, the former Oscars host wrote on Twitter: “I believe in forgiveness. I believe in second chances. And I believe in Kevin Hart.”
She said that their conversation was “authentic” and “honest”, and her support has led to some heated messages on social media.
Hart was announced as host of the 91st Academy Awards in December. He swiftly stepped down after refusing to apologise for the resurfaced tweets, which were posted between 2009 and 2011.
At the time, he stated: “I do not want to be a distraction on a night that should be celebrated by so many amazing talented artists” and apologised to the LGBT+ community “for insensitive words from my past”.
According to People, Hart's apology left “a lot of people at the Academy scratching their heads" because he did what they has asked.
“It’s all they ever wanted him to do, and he’s doing it in spades. So now he should be able to come back on his own terms."
Among the 2009-11 tweets was a now-deleted post that read: “Yo if my son comes home & try’s 2 play with my daughters doll house I’m going 2 break it over his head & say n my voice ‘stop that’s gay’.”
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