Someone’s gotta say it—the Academy of Country Music Awards just won’t be the same without Reba McEntire.
In an interview published this week by Country Weekly, Reba let it be known that she is ending her 14-year run as host of the annual ACM Awards, opting to “pass the torch” to Blake Shelton, who has co-hosted the show with her for the past couple of years.
The news actually comes as no surprise to the ACM, who has reportedly known for awhile about Reba’s decision not to return. In a recent statement, the Academy confirmed that Reba had decided to focus her attention toward her role in a new upcoming ABC sitcom Malibu Country, which co-stars Lily Tomlin and is scheduled to roll out this November. The show marks Reba’s first regular acting gig since her show Reba was cancelled in 2007.
Of course, no reason has been given as to why Reba didn’t leave the ACMs back when she was busy filming Reba—or why Blake Shelton is not too busy to host the awards given his current television duties as a judge on The Voice (which now films two seasons per year). But it is what it is; Reba’s hosted the awards show each year since 1999, so we certainly can’t begrudge her the break.
No word yet on whether Blake Shelton will have a co-host for the 2013 ACM Awards, but the Academy promises he has “something big up his sleeve.” As it is, Shelton’s built a great reputation for himself over the past few years as a television personality, and few would dispute that his quick wit and easygoing style will help him fill Reba’s shoes well.
*Sigh* It just won’t be Reba. That’s all.