"If he comes out vociferously apologizing, then everybody deserves a second chance", she said.
DeGeneres said on the show that she believes that it is important for Hart to host, so much so that she says she personally called the Academy to get him back on. The Oscars (which don't now have a host) air February 24 on ABC.
"But for you to be the bigger man, for you to say, 'I understand, ' and to not pay attention", DeGeneres told Hart. But we want him to host. According to DeGeneres, the Academy is interested, telling her, "Whatever we can do, we would be thrilled".
Within hours of Hart's announcement as Oscars host, those familiar with his history of homophobic jokes and comments began surfacing tweets from his long-running Twitter account, asking Hart and the Academy to reckon with what message Hart as Oscars host sent to the LGBTQ community.
"It reminds me of when Kavanaugh got into the Surpreme Court and it was like, is he the only one you could possibly find in this country to do that job?" she asked.
- Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) January 4, 2019In this conversation, @KevinHart4real was authentic and real, and I'm in his corner. "I don't want to step on that stage and make that night about me and my past".
During a lengthy interview on her syndicated talk show, DeGeneres, herself a two-time Oscar host, encouraged Hart to take back the hosting gig. It was supposed to air on Monday.
He previously apologized for the tweets, and did so again in December.
Hart told DeGeneres that he has apologized for his past words but that this was a tough incident for him because he felt it was a attack by "trolls" on his character and career. Hostin added. "When is a person allowed to become an ally?"
"He has apologized and he has evolved in his position", she said. This is stuff I've addressed. "I thought it was an incredible thing and how important it was and how it was a dream", DeGeneres said.
Ellen personally knows Kevin well enough to vouch for him and is a pillar in the LGBTQ community; however, her opinion ruffled some feathers. "That's a small group of people being very, very loud", she added. "I've moved on. I look at life through a different lens, and because of that I live it a different way".
DeGeneres, who was identified as the most admired LGBT+ person in the United States in a Gallup poll released last month, also tweeted: "I believe in forgiveness". But DeGeneres countered that if he doesn't host, "they're gonna win".
The magazine has also called hosting the Oscars "the least wanted job in Hollywood".