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DeGeneres Delivers Safe Oscar Monologue

DeGeneres Delivers Safe Oscar Monologue

Ellen DeGeneres kicked off the 79th annual Academy Awards with a low-key, low-risk monologue that set a warm tone for the evening.
Appearing in a simple red suit with white shirt and shoes, the host was unmistakably laid-back while starting Sunday's ceremony at Los Angeles's Kodak Theater. After a fun segment featuring various nominees, DeGeneres casually commented on the night's attendees, calmly dished jokes and landing a nice laugh while discussing the diversity of this year's nominees.
"Such diversity in the room in a year where there's been so many negative things said about people's race, religion and sexual orientation," said DeGeneres.
"And I want to put this out there: If there weren't blacks, Jews or gays, there would be no Oscars.
"Or anyone named Oscar, when you think about that."
Her biggest laugh, however, came after noting that America didn't vote for best-actress nominee Jennifer Hudson on "American Idol," yet here she was up for an Oscar. Next she zeroed in on former Vice President Al Gore, who has reinvented himself with the documentary "An Inconvenient Truth" after losing the disputed 2000 election to President Bush.
"Al Gore is here," Degeneres said. "America DID vote for him."
DeGeneres followed two more polarizing, edgy comedians as Oscar host: Jon Stewart last year and Chris Rock in 2005. When hosting the Oscars, the opening monologue is always the keynote performance _ and it's long been Billy Crystal's specialty in his frequent host gigs.
DeGeneres didn't spoof the best picture nominees a la Crystal, but the 49-year-old comedian did perform a short song-and-dance number, her former trademark on her weekday talk show.
As a gospel choir streamed out from the wings singing "This night's for you!" DeGeneres briefly boogied in the aisles with a tambourine, and the Oscars were momentarily transformed into an episode of "The Ellen DeGeneres Show."
But those were the only fireworks in an opening that was purposely _ and charmingly _ low key.
DeGeneres herself seemed to recognize as much. After the gospel choir, she sarcastically concluded by saying: "I would not want to follow that!"


Updated : 2021-10-29 06:03 GMT+08:00