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Since first announcing that his son Billy was born with congenital heart disease last May, Jimmy Kimmel has continued to publicly discuss his child’s health on his eponymous late-night show.
In doing so, Kimmel often gets emotional — especially when making pleas for health-care reform in Billy’s name, or thanking the doctors and nurses who treated him at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. Kimmel also teared up while delivering monologues about a number of tragedies — most recently, the school shooting in Parkland, Fla.
“It’s embarrassing to me. I try not to cry,” Kimmel told Ellen DeGeneres in an appearance on her Monday show.
DeGeneres and her viewers had previously raised $1 million for Children’s Hospital Los Angeles when Kimmel’s son was undergoing heart surgery.
“You’re such a great guy, and that was so emotional to see you go through that,” DeGeneres told Kimmel before revealing her “surprise” for him.
“We called our friends at Children’s Hospital LA, including Billy’s surgeon,” DeGeneres said. “We have named one of the rooms of the Heart Institute floor in honor of Billy.”
Cameras then revealed the room, along with its newly added sign that said “In Honor of Billy Kimmel.”
Kimmel thanked the daytime host and said it meant a lot to him. He also used the appearance to discuss hosting Sunday’s Oscars.
“This is a weird year because there are a lot of very serious things happening,” Kimmel said, likely referencing Hollywood’s current reckoning with sexual misconduct and the Time’s Up movement. “Of course, the Oscars are still several days away. Who knows what’s gonna happen between now and then?”
DeGeneres asked Kimmel why he’s even hosting, especially after the busy, tough year he’s had.
“I don’t know why I do anything, really,” Kimmel joked before revealing he was actually asked to host just a day after last year’s gig.
“I feel like maybe they [the Academy] felt sorry for me because I got caught up in the whole envelope thing,” Kimmel said, which he added was not his fault. “I just can’t say that enough.”
While some thought the envelope mix-up was a prank of his, it definitely wasn’t — and if he would’ve pulled any, Kimmel said they would’ve been on Matt Damon.
In an appearance on Good Morning America on Tuesday, Kimmel admitted that he still doesn’t know how the mix-up even happened. And while he thinks “it would be funny if it happened again,” Kimmel said Oscars showrunners are taking precautions this year.
“I think that the biggest safeguard there is is that this company, Pricewaterhouse Coopers, will literally have to go out of business…if they do it a second time,” Kimmel said on GMA. “So I think they’re going to be very, very careful.”
The same could be said for how Kimmel plans to approach topics such as the #MeToo movement. “This show is not about reliving people’s sexual assaults,” Kimmel told ABC News’ Paula Faris on GMA after she asked if he’d address the movement.
“It’s an awards show for people who have been dreaming about maybe winning an Oscar for their whole lives,” Kimmel added. “And the last thing I want to do is ruin that for someone who is, you know, nominated for, you know, best leading actress or best supporting or best director or cinematographer, or whatever, by making it unpleasant.”
Kimmel continued by saying that any jokes he makes are not going to “stop any bad behavior.” As for how many jokes he’ll be making, the Oscars host said he’s dwindled the list down to about 30, though he began with “thousands.”
Kimmel told DeGeneres he wants to be appropriate and respectful, but also — and more important — funny.
“Nobody remembers appropriate or respectful,” Kimmel said laughing.
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