On Friday, the academy announced that Ken Ehrlich will executive produce these top honors for the sixth time. This TV vet oversaw the recent Grammy Awards on CBS that drew a jaw-dropping 40 million viewers.
His last stint as Emmycast exec was back in 2008 when they aired on ABC. That was the year that the Reality Host category was introduced and the nominees — Tom Bergeron, Heidi Klum, Howie Mandel, Jeff Probst and Ryan Seacrest — emceed the event. While Probst won that night, all five were deemed losers for their hosting efforts.
Having them preside over the Emmys was unusual in that only Bergeron (“Dancing with the Stars”) appeared on an ABC show. The Emmys rotate between the Big Four broadcast networks and each uses it as a chance to showcase some of their talent. Indeed, Ehrlich had overseen the previous three Emmys hosted by Seacrest (2007, Fox), Conan OBrien (2006, NBC) and Ellen DeGeneres (2005, CBS). His other gig as producer was in 1980 when the actors strike kept most talent away from the kudos hosted by TV vets Steve Allen and Dick Clark.
Having learned a painful lesson in 2008, ABC had its late night guy Jimmy Kimmel emcee the Emmys when they returned to the alphabet net last year. This year’s Emmys are on CBS, which is spoilt for choice when it comes to an emcee.
The last time the Emmys was on CBS was in 2009 and “How I Met Your Mother” star Neil Patrick Harris knocked it out of the park as host. While the Emmycast is not eligible to contend at the Emmys, Harris was part of the winning team behind the 2009 Tonys, which also aired on CBS.
If CBS wants one of its female stars to be the hostess with the mostest, 2011 Comedy Actress champ Melissa McCarthy (“Mike and Molly“) would be safe bet. She reaped a Comedy Guest Actress bid last year for hosting “Saturday Night Live” and could well contend again this time around for her return engagement.
Likewise, Kaley Cuoco, star of the net’s #1 show, “The Big Bang Theory,” would do a bang-up job. She has emceed the People’s Choice Awards on the Tiffany network for the last two years and proved adept at playing ringmaster.
LL Cool J has hosted the last two Grammycasts on CBS so he and Ehrlich obviously work well together. Add to that his starring role on the net’s hit procedural “NCIS: LA” and he would be a good choice.
Also worth considering is Craig Ferguson who has hosted “The Late Late Show” on CBS since 2005. His only Emmy bid came in the now-defunct Invidual Variety Performance category in 2006 which he lost to Barry Manilow (“Music and Passion”).
Anyone considering hosting should be mindful of the Emmy curse that comes with the job. Only three nominees have won an award the year they were emceeing the Emmycast. To find out who, click through the photo gallery at the bottom of this post.
And to have your say as to who should host this year, vote in the poll below. Don’t see the name of your favorite? Let us know in the comments section and we might add them to the poll.