James Franco and Anne Hathaway were doomed from the start, even before they stepped on stage for the Oscars.
In 2011, the team behind Academy Awards decided to have the younger ones host the annual Oscars night. Not everyone is cut out for hosting, not even the best actors in Hollywood.
There are a few actors who can nail hosting as well, but not everyone can master all the skills out there.
So when Academy Awards tapped Anne Hathaway and James Franco to host the show, the two gladly obliged. At the time, the two actors are still reaching for their stars in Hollywood, which probably made them accept the gig to further attract popularity.
Little did they know that they are in for a disastrous evening. Anne Hathaway and James Franco both failed miserably in hosting the 83rd Annual Academy Awards. So what really happened between Anne Hathaway and James Franco?
David Wild, a newly recruited writer to join the 83rd Academy Awards ceremony, shared the behind the scenes of choosing Hathaway and Franco.
During his interview he revealed that he found out the pair would host the show when an executive producer called him. He told Ringer “She said ‘We have our hosts!’” … And I was like, ‘Great who is it?’
This decision led to one of the most controversial moments in Anne Hathaway's career. Wild admitted that he was confused when he heard Franco and Hathaway were chosen as the host for the upcoming annual Academy Awards.
He shared "The one thing you learn in life, is that you have to react and address something as it’s happening. You’ve got to listen to that voice, or else.”
Wild admitted “There was a moment the night before the show when we were in the production office in some level of panic…. It was like the world’s most uncomfortable blind date between the cool rocker stoner kid and the adorable theater camp cheerleader.”
While the pair is making a name for themselves in the entertainment industry, the decision to have them host the show was not something everyone on the team behind the event agreed on.
Initially, the hosting gig was turned down by Anne Hathaway, but James Franco insisted for the team to bring her on board. One of the producers Jordan Rubin revealed that Hathaway made an effort for the smooth flow of the show.
The writer revealed “Anne made herself readily available. I went to her house and worked on the script, and she was on a bunch of conference calls and responding to emails and was a great collaborator.”
While Hathaway was a delight to work with, Franco was the opposite. The actress was committed to hosting the event while Franco does not seem to exert efforts.
The producer further revealed, “[Franco] always seemed to be on a flight and it was very hard for me to get a hold of him… That was a red flag."
He continued “She showed up ready to play and committed 110 percent… And he [James Franco] was a great guy but often looked like he had just woken up from a nap.”
This should have a premonition for the team of the Academy Awards, but they still went ahead with the plan. Wild shared that prior to the show starting, Hathaway suggested something to Franco which the latter did not appreciate. He said “This is a memory, but [she] was like, ‘Maybe you should try that,’ and he was like ‘Don’t tell me how to be funny.’
Producer Jordan Rubin thought that maybe Franco was hoping for a different dynamic, one that is similar to “a buddy-cop movie with two opposite characters”. Both actors were lambasted by both critics and viewers of the show.
The pair acknowledged that they were both criticized for the way they handled hosting the Oscars. Despite the actress asking for advice before the event took place, it still did not yield to anything.
Anne Hathaway tells People, “God, I just remember the night before we’re about to go up there, and me turning to everyone and going, ‘Am I too much? This feels really big to me.’ And the producer just went, ‘No! Don’t do less. Do more if you need to.’ And I was like, ‘Oh okay, I guess it’s going great.’ And I didn’t realize what was happening about that whole thing."
The 40-year-old actress also claimed that Franco did not help much to give her something to work with. She was left to fend for herself and the worst case scenario became a reality.
She further revealed, “When all the dust settled, I was just like, ‘You gotta be kidding me. Your first instinct is usually the right one.’ And all the reasons why I turned it down came true. All of them. It’s just a no-win situation."
She continued, “You’re not trained at this, how is this going to enhance your life? All of the reasons why. Even the people who do it spectacularly well — like Hugh Jackman, Jimmy Kimmel, Ellen DeGeneres— usually just get a ‘meh’ from everyone. It’s a really hard gig to stick the landing on.”
While the actress was regretful of her decision, James Franco believes that he made the right choice. The actor tells Shortlist, “I’m glad I did it. I think it’s funny that people want to slam me for that because I don’t think it’s genuine. I don’t think people really care about the Oscar host, but it’s something that they feel they can go after me for, and they have. But they’re doing it for different reasons.”
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