During his Friday, March 1, 2019, appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, the American Idol host claimed that he suffered a major snub after hosting the event’s red carpet coverage for both E! and ABC … but he’s probably glad we didn’t see this one play out on TV.
While explaining that he’d been asked to introduce Queen at the top of the awards show for the latter network, Seacrest told the titular host, “They said, ‘Well, you’re going to get to go inside the theater for the first time and broadcast for a second in there right before the Oscars.'” He added, “So I thought, ‘This is cool. I’ll get to see the Oscars with all the movie stars.'”
Unfortunately, things didn’t necessarily go as planned for the 44-year-old. “I get in and I’m there and I say, ‘Coming up next, Queen will open the Oscars right after this,'” Seacrest continued. “And I look back from my seat, and the ushers and the stage manager come, and they say, ‘Mr. Seacrest, your car is ready.’ I said, ‘No, I just essentially opened the Oscars by saying it’s coming up next on ABC.’ And they said, ‘Well, we don’t have a ticket for you.'” Yikes! Talk about awkward.
Soon after, the multi-hyphenate found himself being put in his car. “Next thing I know, I’m on Hollywood Boulevard going away from the Oscars,” he quipped. “And the LAPD guy, the cops are on the corner, the window’s down. They say, ‘Oh, hey, Ryan. You’re going the wrong way.’ I said, ‘No, I’m going the right way. They’ve sent me home to watch on television like everybody else.'”
While concluding the story, Seacrest jokingly said, “So, I did what you did: I ordered Postmates and I had pizza and watched the Oscars at home in my Uggs! That’s what I did.” Stars, they really are just like us.
Of course, it’s safe to say that Seacrest’s low-key Oscars experience was preferable to the more serious press surrounding last year’s event. Readers may recall how multiple celebs famously avoided him altogether on the red carpet in 2018 after he was accused of sexual misconduct the previous November (via The Hollywood Reporter). Seacrest spoke out against the claims on multiple occasions, and E!’s investigation into the matter found no evidence to support the allegations, according to USA Today.
However, the controversy continued amid the #MeToo movement and Time’s Up initiative. Tarana Burke, who founded the #MeToo movement, called on E! to have its go-to host skip that year’s Academy Awards coverage, telling Variety, “They really shouldn’t send him.” Meanwhile, 16 of the 20 performers nominated in the acting categories noticeably passed over Seacrest to chat with other reporters on the red carpet (via the Daily Mail).
It should be noted that Seacrest wasn’t the only E! team member to have a difficult night at this year’s Academy Awards. E! News co-anchor Giuliana Rancic made headlines during the duo’s red carpet event after multiple social media users expressed concern and criticism over her skinny frame.
“Is anyone else concerned about #Giuliana Rancic’s skeleton figure?” one person tweeted. “Her bones are popping out everywhere!!! It’s NOT a healthy look. #pleaseeat.” While some viewers body-shamed Rancic, others suggested she may have an eating disorder. However, some fans used the opportunity to come to her defense. “Man, Giuliana Rancic can’t catch a break,” one Twitter user wrote. “She’s been out of the spotlight for a lonnnnnnng time, then goes to the Oscars and gets weight shamed immediately.”
For her part, Rancic opted to not publicly respond to the social media commentary this time around. However, the 44-year-old is unfortunately no stranger to controversy brewing over her appearance. Following her 2011 battle with breast cancer (via Today), the TV personality revealed that a cancer-suppressing drug had affected her weight. “I’m sorry that some people think I’m disgustingly skinny, as they put it, but there’s nothing I can do,” she told People in 2015. After revealing that she wished she could put on some pounds, Rancic said, “I look in the mirror and it’s hard for me. I am really thin. I want to look fit and beautiful and sexy, and I can’t.”
Here’s hoping Ryan Seacrest and Giuliana Rancic can enjoy some drama-free red carpet coverage at the 2020 Oscars.