I would like to offer personal thanks to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Along with ABC, the organization has decided to change up this year’s Oscars broadcast by beginning a half-hour earlier. The show, on March 4 with host Jimmy Kimmel, will start at 8 p.m., instead of the usual 8:30.
Perhaps the change is an attempt to improve the ratings, which hit a nine-year low last year.
The night won’t be shorter, mind you; the telecast will still go on and on and on per tradition. If I couldn’t whine and complain about the length of the Oscars, I’d be bereft.
Also in awards-show news: The Screen Actors Guild Awards is changing up its telecast, which airs live on TNT and TBS on Jan. 21. Usually, the ceremony has no host, but this year Kristen Bell will take over.
Bell, star of “The Good Place,” said in a statement: “I am honored to be part of the SAG Awards and am a little nervous about being its first-ever host. I’m so glad that I’ll be in the company of my fellow actors, many of whom I’ve worked with before, so I know they’ll be warm and supportive.”