As ABC?s contract with the Academy Awards ends, EW plays with the prospect of a hipper, MTV-run show

Since 1976 ABC has given Oscar a home, but after the 1995 show the current contract expires. If the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences really wants to improve its annual backslap, it’ll dress Oscar up in 501s and a leather jacket, then take him over to MTV, which puts on the most unpredictable, entertaining awards show of the year — The MTV Video Music Awards. To find out what would happen if MTV hip met Oscar hokum head-on, we asked Doug Herzog, the network’s senior vice president of programming, how he would stage this year’s ceremony.

*Opening Credits: ”As a tribute to Cineplex Odeon, MTV would charge everybody $7 at the door. We’d have popcorn, too a buck-fifty for a small size. Mr. Blackwell would be there giving critiques of what everybody’s wearing as they get out of their limos. Then he’d come out later with his 10 best and worst list. The clothes & are the only thing people care about anyway.”

*New Categories: ”I think we’d add some awards: Best Movie to Watch on a Plane, Best Movie to Watch on Video, Most Product Placements in a Film, Best Comeback (we’d give it to John Travolta this year), and Best Movie Without John Goodman.”

*The Music Numbers: ”The Oscar people might have Michelle Pfeiffer sprawled out on a piano singing stuff from The Fabulous Baker Boys. But that strikes us as obvious. We’d have the Baker Boys perform instead. Public Enemy would perform because we thought Do the Right Thing was ignored. I’d put Bette Midler in her old mermaid costume and have her come out of a shell to sing songs from The Little Mermaid.”

*The Presenters: ”We’d definitely have Madonna, because she was the best thing about MTV’s show last year. I’d team her with Lauren Bacall — is she still around? Bogie would’ve liked Madonna. Bart Simpson would give out the animation award. I’d pair the dog from Turner and Hooch with the baby from Look Who’s Talking, because everybody loves dogs and babies. Rob Lowe would have to do something. He could give out the Best Movie to Watch on Video — what else?”