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“It is an honor to be here hosting tonight after everything that we’ve all been through together over the past few years, between COVID, Monkeypox, the Don’t Worry Darling press tour,” the comedian said. “It’s been a lot.”
“I’m just happy to be here tonight, supporting the critics’ right to choose,” she went on to say in reference to the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade. “At least someone still has the choice, unless they’re a female critic and then it just depends on what state they live in.”
When announcing that the cast of The Bear was at the ceremony, Handler joked about the drama surrounding James Corden’s ban from a New York restaurant for alleged “abusive” behavior. “They showed us how grueling and how absolutely miserable working in the restaurant industry can be, and they didn’t even have to wait on James Corden,” she said.
After mentioning Julia Roberts’ nomination for her role in Robbie Pickering’s Gaslit, Handler went after controversial celebrity diet culture and called out those who have been using Ozempic for weight loss — a medication meant for those with diabetes. “The word ‘gaslighting’ was actually Merriam-Webster’s word of the year. And for those of you who don’t know, gaslighting is when someone tries to convince you that your own perceptions of reality are wrong,” she added. “Like, when celebrities say they lost weight by drinking water but really it’s because everyone’s on Ozempic. Even my housekeeper’s on Ozempic.”
Handler went on to shout out other television series, films, actors and actresses who are nominated in major categories from Everything Everywhere All at Once, The Bear, The First Lady, The Fabelmans, Fleishman Is in Trouble, Tár, Avatar: The Way of Water and more.
“It’s an honor to be here tonight to have all of you celebrate the brilliant results of all of your hard work, your talent and your dedication this past year,” Handler concluded. “You have entertained us, you have moved us, enlightened us, and for the first time, Congress is more dysfunctional than Hollywood. It even has more sex offenders, so we already won.”
Ahead of the big night, the comedian spoke with The Hollywood Reporter about hosting the event and said, “My intention is just to have a great time and to make everybody feel comfortable and welcome — like they belong there.”
Starting in 2007, Handler hosted E!’s Chelsea Lately for seven years, during which she was the only female late night talk show host on-air. She has also launched the documentary series Chelsea Does and the talk show Chelsea on Netflix, as well as released her first stand-up special, Chelsea Handler: Evolution, on HBO Max in 2020. Other career achievements include six New York Times best-selling books and her iHeartRadio advice podcast, Dear Chelsea.
More recently, Handler has been vocal about possibly making a return to late night television. She said on the The Daily Beast‘s The Last Laugh podcast that she is seriously pitching herself to take over The Daily Show, following Trevor Noah’s exit.
Find the full list of winners at the Critics Choice Awards here.
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