Neil Patrick Harris calls politics ‘low-hanging fruit’ for award show hostsJune 12, 2019
Renaissance man of entertainment Neil Patrick Harris bestowed words of wisdom during an appearance on “The View” about hosting award shows like the Tony Awards and whether the hosts should avoid talking about politics.
Following the 73rd Annual Tony Awards with host James Corden on Sunday, Harris, a seasoned award show host and four-time Tony Awards host, was up front about weaving politics into award shows on “The View” Wednesday.
“I think politics in an award show is fine. It just seems like easy low-hanging fruit,” Harris said. “I think if anything, the people who win awards have an opportunity to say something that is from their heart.”
Harris took part in one of Corden’s many musical numbers for the Tonys, which involved Corden, Sara Bareilles and Josh Groban stuck in a bathroom cracking from the pressure of putting on a good show for thousands of live audience viewers and millions at home. Harris, however, appears from the anxiety-ridden stalls confident and seemingly unfazed by the idea of hosting Broadway’s most important night of the year.
“I’m not really nervous when I’m doing the actual show,” Harris said. “I’m much more nervous the week before when you’re having to lock in content. Award shows are beasts.”
“They’re three hours, and you have to schedule everything down,” Harris continued, before EGOT winner and co-host Whoopi Goldberg cut in to say that three hours happens only “if you’re lucky.”
“There’s a lot of variables because people give long speeches, and you have less time to do bits that you have, and you have to sort of be on the fly cutting things down. So when you’re preemptively trying to figure out what the show is going to be, that’s when I’m most nervous. When I’m doing it and it’s happening and it’s all on the prompters, then your job really is to welcome everyone and establish a tone that makes people feel welcome.”
Still, Corden has had his fair share of hosting award shows, too. He steered clear of politics during his second time hosting the Tony Awards this year.
The last time Harris hosted an awards show was the Oscars in 2015. Although he said “it was fun to check off the list,” Harris doesn’t think he’ll be hosting the Oscars again anytime soon.
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