Jimmy Kimmel doesn't want a repeat of the 2017 Oscars.
On Monday, ABC Television and The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences released a first look at the 2018 Oscars' official key art. Kimmel appears in a photo contact sheet motif, striking various poses as host of the biggest night in Hollywood. Scribbled across the top is a question: "What could possibly go wrong?" Given last year's Best Picture mix-up between La La Land and Moonlight, it's safe to assume new precautions will be taken for this year's ceremony.
Kimmel is excited to be in the driver's seat once again. "My goal was to kill from the beginning of the show until the end of the show. I just didn't expect that the end of the show would be so interesting. I wanted to keep the show lively and I wanted to make sure that there were elements of danger, like bringing a tour bus full of strangers who had no idea they were about to be on television, into the theater, and I wanted to keep people interested. I didn't want to just do the monologue and then check out for the rest of the show," he told Entertainment Weekly in December. "And everyone forgot everything as soon as that envelope was opened."
Ah, the envelope.
In that moment, Kimmel—like everyone else—was confused. "I had to remind myself that I wasn't at home watching the Oscars—that I was the host of the Oscars and I was the only person who had a microphone on," he said. "I was sitting in the audience next to Matt Damon."
In the blink of an eye, Kimmel scrapped his closing bit with Damon to do damage control instead. "I walked up on stage and people seemed shocked and mad, and my first reaction almost always is to start laughing. It just struck me as a funny situation. People were hashing things out, and we were on live television and Warren Beatty seemed to be the center of it, and I was tickled," he said. "Then I realized that people were very upset, and then I realized also that, 'Oh, this is maybe the worst moment of somebody's life here,' and maybe this shouldn't be funny. Maybe I need to do something to just kill time until we figure out what happened.'"
"I have to say, I'm never more comfortable than when chaos is happening around me, and I felt pretty comfortable in that moment—comfortable enough to just kind of speak. I don't really even remember what I said. I've not watched it back, but I think I took the blame for it, just to end things. And we all know what happened from there," he said. "I said, 'Warren, what did you just do?'...I don't know, it seemed funny to blame it on Warren, this icon. Yeah, that was crazy."
Human error shouldn't be an issue this year, he said. "I hope that we don't top that. I don't want to have the first and second biggest blunders in the history of television on my watch."
ABC will broadcast the show live Sunday, March 4, at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.
Michael De Luca and Jennifer Todd are returning to produce the 90th Academy Awards.