As a rather formal and fancy affair (at least in our humble opinion), the Oscars tend to shy away from controversial hosts — and Billy Crystal, who has now done the gig a whopping nine times — seemed like a safe choice.
Until he appeared in a "Midnight in Paris" parody alongside Justin Bieber… in blackface.
The 62-year-old comedy legend donned black makeup to reprise his famous "Saturday Night Live" impression of Sammy Davis, Jr. and asked the other (white as could be) version of himself, "Billy, is Biebs the young Sinatra or am I nuts?"
Jury's still out on whether the "Biebs" can lead the next generation's Rat Pack, but some definitely thought Crystal was nuts. Many Hollywood elite instantly hit Twitter to express their discomfort with the scene, but one person wasn't bothered one bit. Tracey Davis, Sammy Davis, Jr.'s daughter with his second wife, May Britt, told The Hollywood Reporter, "I am 100 percent certain that my father is smiling."
She even pointed out that this wasn't the first time Crystal paid homage to the late great. "Billy previously played my father when he was alive, and my father gave Billy his full blessing,” she continues, explaining that "SNL" gave the imitation "legendary status." Tracey really seems to heart Mr. Crystal. "I know the mutual love, respect and admiration that you had for each other and for his kids, Jeff, Mark and I," she says. "Thank you."
Hey, if it's OK with her, it's OK with us. Not sure about the no blacks in Beverly Hills joke, though.