If there’s anyone out there that can revive award ceremonies, is it our favorite superhero Tom Holland? 2022’s Academy Awards will bring back the Oscars host for the first time in three years, according to The Hollywood Reporter (THR). After Kevin Hart dropped out of the 2019 ceremony following the resurfacing of old, homophobic tweets, the Academy chose to rely on big-name presenters rather than replacing him. After the hostless ceremony saw an increase in ratings from the record low of the year before, the next two years followed suit. But 2021’s Academy Awards saw a new record low. Though the identity of the new host remains undisclosed (and potentially unconfirmed at this point in time), rumors are swirling that Tom Holland may take the Oscars stage.
THR revealed that the Academy has reached out to Holland to discuss the possibility, and it was during an interview with THR in December that Holland expressed enthusiasm over the idea. “Of course I would host the f*cking Oscars!… What kind of f*cking idiot wouldn’t host the Oscars?” he said. “..if they ask me to, I would, and it would be very fun. I would really enjoy it.” It’s a busy time for him between the Uncharted press tour and shooting for Apple TV+’s The Crowded Room, as he explained to THR, but if they can make the timing work, it sounds like the Academy might have him in the bag.
It’s no secret that award shows are dying. The winners of The Golden Globes were announced via social media this year, after the telecast was canceled following “controversy surrounding the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s lack of diversity and ethical questions…” according to CNN. The 2021 Grammys also hit a ratings low. And the Oscars have been repeatedly criticized recently for their lack of diversity, spawning the hashtag #OscarsSoWhite back in 2015. So is Tom Holland hosting enough to save the program?
In 2020, Variety reported that the median age of viewers of award shows like the Oscars and The Grammys was over 50 years old, as opposed to under 40 years old just twenty years before. Their audience is aging, and new viewers aren’t tuning in. It’s not too surprising when you consider the facts. A 2021 look at digital media trends from Deloitte found that Gen Z ranks watching TV or movies as their last choice for entertainment, and when they do watch TV they favor streaming over live broadcasts. As the most diverse generation, Gen Z demands diversity and inclusion in everything, from their companies to brands to advertisements and more. When #OscarsSoWhite is the norm, Gen Z isn’t likely to tune in.
But Gen Z does love Tom Holland. His chance of drawing them in is probably better than most. The Academy would be smart to lock him in for this year’s telecast if they want to draw in a new audience, but it’ll take a lot more to gain the loyalty of a new, incredibly progressive generation. Until the Oscars aren’t so white, even Tom Holland may not be able to get us to sit through hours of repetition, ads, and cringey moments.