Regina Hall defends Oscars’ new format

Oscars co-host Regina Hall says the idea behind category reformatting was ‘to get audiences to stay engaged’

Regina Hall
Regina Hall


The Academy has been under fire since announcing last month that eight below-the-line categories will not be presented in real time during the telecast. Instead, they will be given out during a pre-ceremony with acceptance speeches edited into the show.

Event co-host Regina Hall said she discussed the matter with producer Will Packerand is confident the categories will be celebrated properly. She understands that the Oscars could use a pivot because the Academy has to "keep the time of the show down", Hall said.

"There's always, 'The show is too long'."

Packer, Hall added, "is trying to get audiences to stay engaged (but still) celebrate all the creative parts of how a film comes together and the people who make that. Everyone watching will see those faces and be able to cheer on all those nominees and winners."

This year's show, which takes place on March 27, is being produced byHall's "Girls Trip" producer Will Packer.

Packer had defended the reformatting in a March 4 interview with Variety's Clayton Davis.

"I think it was the right decision," Packer said.

"We have to understand that the Academy Awards show as we know it is at an inflection point. The next coming years, especially this year, are going to be a harbinger for what this show will become."

Hall recalled being asked to co-hostthis year's Oscars with Wanda Sykes and Amy Schumer, reports

"I was like, 'Really?'" she remembered.

"And then it's also terrifying. Are they crazy for asking me? Or am I crazy for saying yes. But it was also really great because I'm with two amazing women and there's been so much support."

Hall says that she never thought she'd see three women co-hosting the film industry's biggest night of the year.

"I think it's really incredible," she said. "It's Women's History Month and I think we have a really big reason to celebrate...

Celebrating this moment and how profound it is, but also really hopefully how fun it is. We want people to look back and really understand and feel, 'Oh, that was fun. We really celebrated and we had three women.' It's great."

She said she was “really excited to celebrate films and make fun of people, too".

“Hopefully everyone will know anything that's said or done, it's all in fun. It is the point. It is one of the points of the night to be able to celebrate and for all of us to make fun of ourselves... To celebrate all the nominees and the movies and poke fun where we can," Hall said.

(This was first published in National Herald on Sunday)

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