The 2023 MTV Movie & TV Awards will look a lot different this year as it is set to air without a host — and without a red carpet — amid the Hollywood writer’s strike. The scheduled emcee, Drew Barrymorebowed out on Thursday in support for the Writers Guild of America, which is seeking an overhaul in compensation for streaming residuals. “I have listened to the writers, and in order to truly respect them, I will pivot from hosting the MTV Movie & TV Awards live in solidarity with the strike,” the actress, 48, said in a statement, per Variety.
“Everything we celebrate and honor about movies and television is born out of their creation,” Drew continued. “And until a solution is reached, I am choosing to wait but I’ll be watching from home and hope you will join me.” The star then thanked MTV for their partnership and revealed she will be returning to host the show next year. “When I can truly celebrate everything that MTV has created, which is a show that allows fans to choose who the awards go to and is truly inclusive,” she explained.
MTV also announced that the show will not be live and will pivot to a clip-based awards ceremony instead for the May 7 broadcast. As Drew had a few pre-taped bits under her belt before pulling out, she will likely be seen in those for the televised special.
“She has our full support,” Bruce Gillmer, executive producer of the MTV Movie & TV Awardstold Variety. “So she’s not going to be with us live in the house for the show and we will essentially be going hostless,” he continued. “The silver lining in all of this is that we really formed a partnership almost a family-like atmosphere. So we see this as a shift in direction, but also a pause for the initial plan, which we’ve all agreed and she’s accepted to continue as our host in 2024.”
As of Thursday, Gillmer said the powers that be are still figuring out how to open the show, address the strike and let fans know why the show looks a bit different than originally planned. “But we have a plan, since the award show is fan-voted, we want to honor the fans’ participation and also honor the talent that earn these awards,” he explained. “So we’ll be giving the awards away. We’re working on a plan on how to do that without the traditional presentation involved, should the talent or some of the talent not show. We’ve got backups to our backups. And we’re planning on keeping as many of the signature elements of the show intact.”
He added, “We will have a live audience and it will still be a live event. Different, with more pre-taped packages and so forth, which are scalable, but it’ll still have that live event feel.”
Gillmer also insisted that the MTV magic will be alive and well. “The audience always loves the sneak peeks for the biggest movies that are about to be released. They can only see those sneak peeks on on this award show. And we’re going to give awards away that they voted on for the signature categories, like best kiss, villain flight, all that. Hopefully we figured out a way to celebrate some of the year’s biggest moments and WTF moments.”
The jury is still out on which, if any, celebrities will be showing up to pass out awards. The originally announced list of presenters included Tiffany Haddish, Jamie Lee Curtis, Gal Gadot, Rodrigo Santoro and Sarah Michelle Gellaramong many, many others. Stay tuned to HollywoodLife to find out.