Less than 24 hours after Kevin Hart announced that he was being given the "opportunity of a lifetime" to host the 2019 Academy Awards in February, his old tweets, specifically homophobic ones, multiple containing the slur f*g, started getting attention.
The newfound attention towards Hart’s old homophobic tweets comes at a time when the 91st annual ceremony will likely feature queer films, such as Boy Erased, and Bohemian Rhapsody. There's also the strong possibility that LGBTQ icon Lady Gaga becomes the front-runner for Best Actress, creating a situation where her potential Oscars moment is focused on her addressing the comedian's past remarks in her speech.
Hart has also come under fire for seemingly defending a joke from his 2010 stand-up special Seriously Funny where he said "one of my biggest fears" was his son being gay. "It's about my fear," he said in a 2015 Rolling Stone interview. "I’m thinking about what I did as a dad, did I do something wrong, and if I did, what was it? Not that I’m not gonna love my son or think about him any differently. The funny thing within that joke is it’s me getting mad at my son because of my own insecurities—I panicked. It has nothing to do with him, it’s about me. That’s the difference between bringing a joke across that’s well thought-out and saying something just to ruffle feathers."
The same year as the Rolling Stone interview, Hart used that same "insecurities" excuse when explaining why he would never play a gay character on The Breakfast Club. "I can’t,” he said, per People. "Not because I have any ill will or disrespect, but because I don’t think I’m really going to dive into that role 100 percent, because of insecurities about myself trying to play that part. Does that make sense?"
Hart posted a non-response to the resurfacing tweets:
He put screenshots of the tweets on Instagram, again saying "I swear I love being a dad," and hashtagging it #message.
But sometime after the ruckus got going, Hart (or someone on his team) did delete at least some of the tweets.
Is an actual response coming? The Rolling Stone piece's author shared some of his 2015 transcript that would suggest we shouldn't hold our breath: