Kevin Hart statue holds rainbow flag near Oscars venue
A street artist erected a life-size golden statue of comedian Kevin Hart near the venue hosting the Oscars.
The Kevin Hart statue sees the star dressed in a suit and holding a LGBT+ rainbow flag. The caption, “Hollow Apology” is a clear reference to the controversy over homophobic tweets that led Hart to withdraw from hosting the 91st Academy Awards ceremony in December.
Plastic Jesus confirmed as much in a post on Instagram unveiling his latest creation along the Hollywood Boulevard on Thursday (February 21).
“‘AND THE WINNER IS…’ This year’s Oscar statue ‘Hollow Apology’ featuring Kevin Hart. Over the past decades most countries have made great inroads fighting homophobia and hate, however the current divisive rhetoric seems to have taken us back to the 1970’s.
“So much of the Entertainment industry output comes from LGBTQ Individuals we should be celebrating it and not creating a hateful environment.”
The Kevin Hart apology saga
Soon after Hart was announced as the host for this year’s Oscars ceremony in December, social media users unearthed old homophobic jokes the comedian and actor posted between 2009 and 2012. Others also pointed out to a joke in his stand-up routine in which he described his son coming out as gay as his “biggest fear.”
Hart apologised and withdrew from hosting the Oscars, but TV host Ellen DeGeneres invited him on her show in January to convince him, Americans and the Oscars committee that Hart should still fulfil his dream of hosting the awards ceremony as he had apologised enough.
Various commentators, including CNN host Don Lemon, disagreed with Hart and DeGeneres’ assertion that he had adequately apologised for his past remarks. A Vulture investigation published on January 4 found several instances of Hart addressing the criticism he has received for the homophobic jokes throughout the years, but no clear apology until the moment he acknowledged he was “wrong” in making those jokes during his chat with DeGeneres.
As the controversy flared up again, Hart attempted a new apology to the LGBT+ community during his radio show Straight from the Hart—but ended up unravelling in a rant.
Kevin Hart statue latest Plastic Jesus work addressing controversies in entertainment
The Kevin Hart statue is the latest addition to Plastic Jesus’ work, which addresses controversies in the entertainment industry—he has previously targeted President Donald Trump’s star along the Walk of Fame, erecting a mini-wall around it in 2016 and putting it behind bars last year.
Also last year, Plastic Jesus and fellow street artist Joshua ‘Ginger’ Monroe unveiled a life-size golden statue of Harvey Weinstein sitting on a sofa, the statue captioned “Casting Couch” in reference to the multiple allegations of sexual misconduct levelled against the Hollywood producer.