January 03, 2019
In one of his first public appearances since stepping down from hosting the 2019 Oscars, Kevin Hart will be a guest on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" next week.
There are a number of ways this could go. Hart's choice to step down as Oscar host came after a whirlwind of negative publicity surrounding old, homophobic tweets written by the comedian, between 2009 and 2011, before his first major comedy special became popular.
Choosing to appear opposite DeGeneres, who hosted the Oscars in 2014 and has been honored by President Barack Obama for being one of the first television stars to come out as gay, is likely not a mere coincidence.
Hart's visit also coincides with the release of "The Upside," the dramedy set in Philadelphia and co-starring Bryan Cranston, which has gone through several different release dates, and titles, since it began filming in early 2017. Now it's officially hitting theaters on Jan. 11.
Appearing on "Ellen" may be a means for Hart to garner some amnesty while trying to promote a film that showcases his dramatic acting ability, as well as the comedy for which he is known.
Is this the formula for a tense Q&A between the two comics? It will be interesting to see how typically-convivial DeGeneres handles the scenario.
Hart will be a guest on "Ellen" Monday, Jan. 7 at 3 p.m.