During the Winter Television Critics Association virtual press tour yesterday, Craig Erwich, the president of ABC, which is the network that airs the Oscars, confirmed that this year’s show will have a host, after going host-less for the last three. The Oscars this year are happening later, at the end of March, originally because of the Super Bowl and the Winter Olympics but that date seems to be working in its favour, so far, given that everything is being pushed back because of Omicron. Sarah will have more on the Oscars later today. 


So now that we know there will be a host, the question is…who? Dwayne the Rock Johnson’s name has been thrown out there a lot over the last few years. And Tom Holland put himself in the mix recently during an interview with The Hollywood Reporter when he said he’d be open to the idea but that he’s too busy right now to actually commit. Maybe when the Academy heard that they made him an offer he couldn’t refuse. 

But there are other possibilities. A few years ago, my go-to suggestion was Justin Timberlake. Not that I want to sit through three hours of Justin Timberlake, but he does have the skillset for it. He has the live stage experience. He can sing and dance and he is proficient in a sketch, I guess, if you want to take his Saturday Night Live experience into consideration (I personally think he’s overrated on SNL), he should be on the short list that Oscars producers have undoubtedly been putting together. Whether or not he’ll do it…. well… there’s the matter of that ego; Justin Timberlake wants to win an Oscar (lol), not host them. Also, the timing might not be great for him right now. The Janet Jackson documentary is coming out soon. There’s a good chance that the Super Bowl will come up and if that’s the case, the culture will be re-interrogating Justin’s involvement. And he was already re-interrogated last year, around the same time, when Framing Britney Spears came out, after which he posted an Instagram apology to both Britney and Janet and he’s been laying low ever since. I wonder if he’ll want to keep it low through these next few months as Janet will be telling her story. Besides, I have a better idea now for the Oscar host, if the spot is actually still open. 


Channing Tatum, aka Magic Mike, should host the Oscars, non? 

They just announced a third movie, by the way, which I am not mad at and you shouldn’t be either, given what this franchise has now come to stand for with the second movie and also the stage production, which is female desire. If they’re keeping that energy for movie #3, I’m all in. 

Channing can dance. He is comfortable on a stage. He is comfortable in a live environment. He is funny, he takes the job seriously, but he doesn’t take himself too seriously, which is key in these kinds of situations because nobody needs another James Franco. Channing is well-liked in the business, he has a good reputation, he will be embraced by his peers in the audience. And he just happens to have a company of male dancers who know how to draw an audience. They want ratings, don’t they? 


You don’t think multiple demos will tune in to watch Magic Mike at the Oscars? The MiniVan Majority will show up. The gay men will show up. The teens on TikTok will show up. Anyone who is horny will show up, and we’ve been horny for two years now having spent so much f-cking time in our homes. 

Channing Tatum should host the Oscars! I’m a genius! 

Right. But could this actually happen?

The timing…is good and bad. Because he happens to have a movie coming out the weekend of the Oscars. The Lost City, starring Channing, Sandra Bullock, and Brad Pitt will be released March 25 (unless they push it). The Oscars are March 27 so it would be great promotion. And if they could work out some kind of appearance involving all three of those movie stars at the Oscars, even better. 


But promotion might be the issue. If he’s already committed to a promotional schedule and a press tour for The Lost City, I’m not sure he could work in planning and rehearsal time to host the Oscars. That said, if I’m the studio, having him host the Oscars as one of the main promotional pushes for the movie, to me, is a good gamble. Especially if you can negotiate with ABC on all kinds of free publicity. 

And for him, professionally? What’s the downside? I can’t see one for him, not if he shows up as the Channing Tatum we saw in Jump Street and Free Guy and the Lego movies and the trailer for The Lost City and, of course, Magic Mike, there’s no downside. Channing Tatum could do this. He’d be great at it. He’d be great for the show. It would be great for all of his shows – from Magic Mike Live! to The Lost City to his other projects. 

Attached – Channing leaving a meeting at the Bel Air hotel yesterday. Could it have been an Oscar meeting?! Unlikely…but I want to hope.