Grammys exec apologizes to Tiffany Haddish after star reveals why she turned down hosting gig
The Recording Academy has apologized to Tiffany Haddish after the comedian called out the Grammys for inviting her to host a ceremony but refusing to pay for her time, hair, makeup or wardrobe.
Haddish, nominated for 2021 best comedy album, spoke out in a Variety interview published Wednesday revealing she turned down an offer to host the Grammys pre-telecast Premiere Ceremony because she was told she would have to pay for all expenses related to the three-hour livestream event herself without compensation.
“All of that would have to come out of my pocket,” she told Variety. “I don’t know if this might mean I might not get nominated ever again, but I think it’s disrespectful.”
“I was like, ‘The exposure is amazing but I think I have enough. I appreciate you guys asking. And as much as I appreciate the honor of being nominated, that’s not OK," Haddish added, likening the ordeal to being asked on a date and then being told you have to pay for it yourself.
Harvey Mason Jr., the Recording Academy Interim President and CEO, posted a video to Instagram early Thursday morning apologizing to Haddish. Unbeknownst to Mason, a talent booker for the academy told Haddish they wouldn't cover the costs, he said.
"To me, that was wrong," Mason said. "I'm frustrated by that decision. It was a lapse in judgement, it was in poor taste and it was disrespectful to the creative community. I'm part of the creative community. I know what that feels like, and it's not right."
The two had a conversation, which Mason thanked Haddish for being "gracious enough to allow." USA TODAY has reached out to Haddish's representatives for further comment.
"I apologized to her personally and I apologized to her from the academy, I expressed to her my regret and my displeasure about how this went down and about how this was handled," Mason said. "Again, I want to say Tiffany, we are sorry and thank you for allowing me to speak on it."