Neil Patrick Harris Doubts He’ll Host the Oscars Again: ‘It’s a Beast’

“It’s so difficult for one who’s simply watching the show to realize just how much time and concession and compromise and explanation has gone into almost every single thing,” the performer says

Neil Patrick Harris doesn’t sound very enthusiastic about the possibility of returning to host the Oscars. Or the “beast,” as he referred to the biggest Hollywood awards event of the year.

“I don’t know that my family nor my soul could take it. It’s a beast,” Harris told the Huffington Post in an interview. “It was fun to check off the list, but for the amount of time spent and the understandable opinionated response, I don’t know that it’s a delightful balance to do every year or even again.”

The show, overall, received mixed reviews from TV critics. TheWrap‘s Jethro Nededog noted Harris’ “adept stage presence” in his review, as well as the host’s “energetic start” with an entertaining musical number.

Harris said he didn’t monitor the public’s reaction “obsessively,” but found it interesting to see what jokes worked for people, and which ones didn’t. 

“It’s so difficult for one who’s simply watching the show to realize just how much time and concession and compromise and explanation has gone into almost every single thing. Every joke. Wording of joke. Placement of joke. Canceling of joke. Embellishment for just one line,” Harris said. And I’m not saying that to defend everything I said as if it was the absolute best choice, but it’s also an award show, and you’re powering through 14 acts filled with 20 plus awards. So my job was to try and keep things as light and specific to this year’s set of films as possible. And if people are critical of that, it’s a big giant platform, so I would assume that they would be.”

Regardless of any criticism people may have, Harris said he is “happy” to have gotten through the routine with the laughs he scored.

“I thought that those in the audience at the Dolby [Theatre] seemed to be enjoying themselves more as the show went on, when I was told that the opposite would be true,” Harris said. “I was told that as the room fills with, you know, it’s four-fifths of the room didn’t win, and you get further into the award-giving they get less enthusiastic and less excited. And I felt while we were doing it that people were enjoying themselves more and more, so for that I’m happy.”

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