×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Why Kevin Hart’s Mea Culpa Was Too Little, Too Late (Opinion)

Forgive me if this sounds trite or preachy, but the importance of owning up to our mistakes cannot be overstated. Denials, silence, cover-ups, repudiation — all are unacceptable.

Media outlets around the globe, including ours, wrote about how Kevin Hart initially took no responsibility for having posted disgusting homophobic tweets years ago that resurfaced when he was tapped to host the Oscars last week. A day later, he deleted some of his most egregious tweets when they reappeared on the internet.

First of all, given how many times in recent memory high-profile personalities have been called out on social media for offensive tweets that have come back to haunt them, why in the world would Hart have thought that he could get away with his past indiscretions? He should have gotten out in front of the inevitable shit storm, or was he in such a serious state of denial that it didn’t even occur to him?

Note to other public figures who have embarrassing skeletons in their closet: Own up, and own up early. (Our guest column by GLAAD president and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis shows how best to do this.)

In Hart’s case, not only did he not fess up before it was too late, but he then failed twice to publicly apologize to the LGBTQ community and its allies even after his old tweets came to light.

When his handlers told him how upset people were over the fiasco, he defended himself in an Instagram video, saying, “Guys, I’m almost 40 years old. If you don’t believe that people change, grow, evolve as they get older, I don’t know what to tell you.” Essentially he wasn’t taking the blame, but shifting it to the public for not getting him.

Making matters worse, he slammed the Motion Picture Academy for giving him an ultimatum to apologize or lose the Oscars gig. The 39-year-old actor-comedian shockingly said in a video, “I chose to pass on the apology … because I’ve addressed this several times.”

Hours later, after more public shaming, he announced on Twitter that he was dropping out as Oscars host. Then he finally apologized. In my book, his concession was a case of too little too late. By not owning up either before the scandal broke or in the immediate aftermath, Hart really blew it.

More Biz

  • "The Continent," directed by Chinese racer

    Alibaba Pictures Buys Into Chinese Director Han Han's Film Studio

    Alibaba Pictures confirmed that it has invested an undisclosed amount in Chinese celebrity blogger-turned-film director Han Han’s Shanghai Tingdong Film. Han’s upcoming “Pegasus” is one of the most anticipated films of the year in China. Alibaba Pictures, part of e-commerce giant Alibaba, is now the second-largest stakeholder in Tingdong. It has a 13.1% stake, according to Chinese [...]

  • Phil McIntyre Steps Down as Roc

    Phil McIntyre Steps Down From Roc Nation Management, but Remains Affiliated With Company

    Phil McIntyre has stepped down as president of Roc Nation Management, but his PhilyMack management company remains affiliated with Roc, a source close to the situation tells Variety. PhilyMack, which McIntyre founded in 2006, partnered with Roc Nation in 2015. The source stressed that McIntyre’s role at Roc Nation Management  — whose clients include Rihanna, [...]

  • Harvey Weinstein Trial

    Ben Brafman Drops Out of Harvey Weinstein Rape Case

    Harvey Weinstein has officially parted ways with defense attorney Ben Brafman, releasing a joint statement Thursday announcing the move. Weinstein had clashed with his defense attorney over strategy in his rape and sexual assault case. The pair issued a statement saying their parting was amicable, and that Brafman would cooperate fully with Weinstein’s new attorneys. [...]

  • Netflix - Apple TV

    Netflix Turns in Record Q4 Subscriber Gain, Price Increase Weighs on U.S. Forecast

    Netflix is beating Wall Street expectations for international subscriber growth — but its recently announced price increase in the U.S. may have put a damper on its momentum in the States. For the fourth quarter of 2018, Netflix reported 1.53 million paid net adds in the U.S. and 7.31 million internationally, to end the year [...]

  • Heather Parry Live Nation

    Live Nation Investigation of Heather Parry Also Targets Leakers (EXCLUSIVE)

    Over the past two weeks, the law firm of Paul Hastings LLP has been probing allegations reported by Variety last month that Heather Parry, the head of Live Nation Productions, had verbally abused employees and used offensive language in the workplace. But the lead investigator, Elena Baca, seems to be just as interested in uncovering [...]

  • Leslie Moonves

    Leslie Moonves to Pursue Arbitration for His $120 Million Severance From CBS

    Former CBS Corp. chairman-CEO Leslie Moonves will pursue an arbitration claim to fight CBS for the $120 million severance that he was denied last month when the company’s board of directors determined he was fired for cause. Moonves was ousted in September after multiple women came forward with allegations of sexual misconduct against the longtime [...]

  • A view of the SK Telecom

    Korean OTT Players, SK Telecom Join Forces to Compete Against Netflix

    South Korea’s three major broadcasters KBS, MBC and SBS have joined forces with the country’s leading telecom firm, SK Telecom, to launch a new video streaming platform. The move is regarded as a defensive reaction against the growing influence of foreign competitors, lead by Netflix. The broadcasters already jointly own Pooq, with MBC and SBS [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content