As E!’s “Live From the Red Carpet” Emmys pre-show got underway on Sunday, viewers were greeted by Brad Goreski and Nina Parker, not Giuliana Rancic and Vivica A. Fox, the duo previously announced to be hosting the two-hour show.
Rancic’s absence was explained in a video message from the host a few minutes into the show.
“I do not take missing an awards show lightly,” Rancic said. “But unfortunately this year is just so different. As part of E! and NBCUniversal’s very strict testing guidelines, especially before an event like this, I did find out I tested positive for COVID-19. Now, as much as I didn’t want to hear that, I’m very thankful that I heard it before I traveled and possibly could’ve exposed other people.”
Rancic said her husband and their son also tested positive for the disease but are currently “doing well.”
In a written statement read by Goreski, Fox said she also tested positive and is isolating at home out of “an abundance of caution.”
“During these unprecedented times, it’s more important than ever that we follow all safety and health rules and guidelines to protect ourselves and each other,” Fox said.
Rancic and Fox were announced as the co-hosts of the pre-show earlier this week, set to headline the network’s interviews with stars and nominees in the hours leading up to the ABC broadcast. Goreski and Parker served as co-hosts of E!’s countdown show immediately preceding “Live From the Red Carpet,” along with “Orange Is the New Black” alum Laverne Cox.
In an interview with TheWrap ahead of Sunday’s show, E!’s head of live events, Jen Neal discussed the possibilities of unexpected difficulties during the live broadcast. “I don’t think there are any precedents,” Neal said. “It requires more imagination and creativity and spontaneity.”