Barely two days after Kevin Hart was announced as the host of the 2019 Academy Awards, the US comedian and actor has abruptly stepped down from the gig after a series of past homophobic tweets resurfaced.
The actor made this known on his Twitter handle on Thursday, December 6, 2018.
Speaking on his withdrawal, Hart said, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences had told him to choose between apologising for the tweets or lose the job, adding that the tweets were from nearly a decade ago and he has matured since then.
Taking to his Instagram handle, Hart wrote; “I have made the choice to step down from hosting this year’s Oscars.
“I chose to pass on the apology. The reason why I passed is because I’ve addressed this several times.
“I’ve said who I am now versus who I was then.
“I’ve done it. I’m going to continue to go back and tap into the days of old when I’ve moved on and I’m in a completely different place in my life,” Hart said in an Instagram video.
Hart, however, apologised to the LGBTQ community for what he called “my insensitive words from my past,” on his Twitter handle.
He wrote; “I’m sorry that I hurt people,” he added. “I am evolving and want to continue to do so. My goal is to bring people together not tear us apart. Much love & appreciation to the Academy. I hope we can meet again.”
The Academy must now find a new host for the 91st Academy Awards in February.