Count her out: Oprah Winfrey shoots down gig as Oscar host

(Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

The Academy Awards continues to scramble to find a suitable host for its 2019 show after Kevin Hart blew up the internet last week when he refused to apologize for anti-gay comments.

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And one person they can certainly count out asking is TV mogul Oprah Winfrey, who gave a clear and definitive “no” when TMZ caught up with her in NYC and asked if she would take up the gig.

“NO!” she shot back.

Winfrey’s got better things to do.

Just last week, she was in town to praise one of her idols, Nobel laureate Toni Morrison.

“It’s impossible to actually imagine the American literary landscape without a Toni Morrison,” Winfrey said Tuesday night during a dinner gala in downtown Manhattan hosted by the Center for Fiction, which named Morrison the winner of a lifetime achievement award. “She is our conscience, she is our seer, she is our truth-teller.”

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And according to Forbes‘ recently released list of the most powerful women in the entertainment, Winfrey is still collecting those coins.

Oprah Winfrey came in at No.1 on the list, and Beyonce isn’t far behind her at No. 6. Scandal creator Shonda Rhimes made the cut at No. 12 (a little slow for the highest-paid showrunner in Tinseltown), and Serena Williams landed at No. 14. Priyanka Chopra rounded out the list at No. 16.

And Winfrey isn’t shy about sharing her blessings. When Oprah Winfrey agreed to be the special guest at the University of Massachusetts’ Chancellor Speaker Series last month, no one knew she would be making such a huge contribution. She did just that when she surprised the school by matching the $1.5 million the event raised for the UMass Lowell Scholarships.

“I was so moved by each of your stories that coming here and speaking and sharing this beautiful evening with you all, I want to do even more,” she told the crowd at the Tsongas Arena. “I would like to match the $1.5 million… so people like yourselves can continue on the path of the greatest, purest, truest expression of themselves.”